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Health Aff (Millwood). 2007 Nov-Dec;26(6):1720-7.

Recent trends In VA treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder and other mental disorders.

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  • 1Veterans Affairs New England Mental Illness Research, Education, and Clinical Center in West Haven, Connecticut, USA.


Treating post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) among returning Iraq/Afghanistan veterans is a high priority for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). The number of Persian Gulf-era veterans diagnosed with PTSD grew by 8,000 veterans per year from 2003 to 2005. Since 1997, however, the average annual growth in all users of VA specialty mental health services has averaged 37,000 veterans per year, including 22,000 per year with PTSD. This expansion was associated with a 37 percent reduction in mental health visits per veteran per year. The VA has substantially increased funding for PTSD services. Nevertheless, the observed growth in demand requires continued monitoring to assure that the needs of returning veterans are met.

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