» Study Shows Veterans Need Better Mental Health Support From Veterans Administration

Study Shows Veterans Need Better Mental Health Support From Veterans Administration

Northville, MI (Law Firm Newswire) July 9, 2013 - Though mental health support can literally save the lives of returning veterans, many must wait years for the help they need.

Legal Help for Veterans is a law firm helping veterans get the benefits they deserve.

A new study has determined that vets with mental health conditions including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression typically must wait an average of two years after returning from deployment before their mental health issues are addressed by Veterans Affairs (VA).

"When the vets do begin to receive mental health treatment, the study also found that care is often fragmented and not as effective as is needed," commented veterans disability lawyer James Fausone.

The study, published in the journal Psychiatric Services in December 2012, looked at vets of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars between 2001 and 2011 processed by Veterans Affairs medical centers. These men and women typically were given eight sessions of mental health treatment, a number considered far lower than that in the civilian population looking for PTSD or depression support, and widely considered "minimally adequate." Seventy-five percent of vets who went to the VA for support did not even receive what researchers dubbed "minimally adequate care."

Numerous issues may delay mental health care for veterans, including the social stigma that may still lingerr around mental health issues for some people, including concern that seeking care may jeopardize future job prospects. The overburdened VA system also means that many vets have long waits to get appointments for initial assessment; the average wait for a mental health evaluation at the VA was 50 days, according to a 2012 report from the VA's inspector general.

The VA has announced that it is adding additional staff and partnering with community health centers to broaden support for veterans in their communities; 15 clinics in seven U.S. states are now able to treat veterans with the VA's approval.

But more is needed, say mental health advocates. The VA inspector general's report found that approximately 30 percent of high-risk (i.e., potentially suicidal) vets were not receiving the mandated multiple follow-up mental health visits within 30 days after an emergency hospitalization. There was no documented contact by the VA of even reaching out to those vets to remind them of follow-up appointments.

James G. Fausone is a Veterans disability attorney and Veterans attorney with Legal Help for Veterans, PLLC. To learn more or to contact a Veterans disability attorney or Veterans attorney call 1.800.693.4800 or visit http://www.legalhelpforveterans.com.

Legal Help for Veterans, PLLC
41700 West Six Mile Road, Suite 101
Northville, MI 48168
Toll Free Phone: 800.693.4800

  • House approves bill to fast-track firing of VA employees
    The House recently passed a bill that would make it easier for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to fire problem workers for misconduct or poor performance. Unlike past VA accountability legislation, the latest proposal would fast-track discipline against all department employees, especially senior executives. House Veterans Affairs Committee Chairman Jeff Miller, R-Florida, introduced the […]
  • VA Inpatient Psychiatric Hospitals Failing to Meet Quality Measures
    A recent study by researchers at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health has revealed more problems with the way hospitals run by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs are operating. This study looked at how well the VA, for-profit and non-profit hospitals, perform on quality measures for inpatient psychiatric care or Hospital-Based Inpatient Psychiatric […]
  • VA watchdog uncovers errors in benefit payments to housebound veterans
    The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) watchdog revealed the agency withheld nearly $110 million in benefit payments from thousands of housebound veterans. The VA’s Office of Inspector General released the new findings after reviewing the VA’s benefits program for disabled veterans who are unable to leave home without assistance due to injury or illness. As […]

See other news sources publishing this article. BETA | Tags: , , , , ,



Get headlines from Law Firm Newswire sent right to your inbox.

* indicates required