Army denies requests to reveal results of PTSD study
Multiple public information requests for the results of an extensive inquiry into the treatment of soldiers with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) have been denied according to NBC News, but the Army says the results will be made public sooner or later.
The probe centers on Madigan Army Medical Center in Tacoma, Washington, where some soldiers claim their PTSD diagnoses have been wrongly changed to save the government money. The review was launched after an Army psychiatrist at Madigan gave a lecture citing a memo that claims veterans suffering from PTSD could get up to $1.5 million in health benefits over their lifetimes.
That memo was obtained by The Seattle Times in February 2012, resulting in the suspension of Madigan’s top official. But now that the probe into how Madigan treats PTSD patients is complete, the Army is mum on its results.
A Pentagon spokesperson told NBC that the probe covers every single mental health diagnosis issued going back to 2001, but cautioned that the files contain sensitive medical information. Nevertheless, the spokesperson said that work to filter out sensitive information would be “completed shortly,” after which “we will be able to share not only the findings, but the way ahead.”
Roughly one soldier committed suicide every 25 hours in 2012, the Army said, for a combined total death toll of 349: an all-time high that outpaced even combat deaths. Veterans who’ve experienced traumatic brain injuries and have suicidal thoughts as a result are urged to call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.