mental health with the at risk population of soldiers

mental health with the at risk population of soldiers in the military. Identify interdisciplinary health professionals important to include in the health promotion. What is their role? Why is their involvement significant?

Veterans Health

Behavioral health (BH) problems are a major component of the overall health and utilization of health care services for military and Veteran’s Administration (VA) beneficiaries. A recent analysis of VA patient records indicated that possible mental disorders were reported for 26% of veterans who experienced combat in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Active duty soldiers, particularly those who experienced combat, are at increased risk of mental health difficulties, particularly posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, and anxiety.2–4 Mental disorders have been shown to be a primary source of disability and separation from the military, with a reported 6-month attrition rate of 45% for those hospitalized for mental health diagnoses.

mental health; Suicide Rates

Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the US. Between 1999 and 2016, the rate of suicide increased by more than 30 percent. In the US military population, there have been a staggering 45,000 suicides in the past six years, and particular groups in the military such as veterans have especially high suicide rates. In fact, the suicide rate for veterans is 1.5 times the rate of non-veterans. There has been recent attention paid to veteran suicides in particular and widespread political support to increase efforts to help prevent military suicides in general.

In March, President Donald Trump issued an executive order—the President’s Roadmap to Empower Veterans and End a National Tragedy of Suicide (PREVENTS)—which creates a task force charged with developing a comprehensive public health plan to prevent veteran suicides. In addition, over the past few months, four of the top Democrats running for president have released plans to reduce veteran suicides. 

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