... the number of troops who have committed suicide after serving in Iraq and Afghanistan totals 10 per cent of deaths suffered on operations. It is likely to be much higher, as MoD figures do not include the Territorial Army or those who have left the services.
...Following the closure last year of the last military hospital, there are now no dedicated mental health wards for service personnel. War is extreme and so is its effect on those who experience it. They need specialist care and I doubt, as one who has sat in psychiatric outpatient clinics, that standard community mental health provisions are adequate...
An understatement in the extreme. When treatment and support for those with visible injuries is found inadequate without the assistance of charitable organisations the phrase 'out of sight, out of mind' has oh so many connotations.
13 Psychiatrists in total for the whole of the Armed Forces.
I was never an infantryman, cannot imagine what many have suffered.
Matters from my time and job still wrangle to this day.
Always remember a young Fusilier down in Bessbrooke. He came in on our Scout and was waiting for a lift going north.
'Look after him, Sarge', Flyco, the Sgt Major from resident battalion said 'He's in a bad way' and has to be evacuated.
He was battalion sniper and having got him a cup of char we just sat and talked.
He had shot more then one from the other side down on the border, and it had got through to him.
He had seen one of them after shooting him and it was cutting Him up.
A Wessex came in later and we saw him on to it, never saw or heard of him again, but never forgot him either.
All to best of memory.
A comment from the septic side of the pond. It is really important to have medical and psychiatric care that is tailored to the needs of veterans. Here we have Dept of Vet. Affairs clinics and hospitals which are quite good but not enough. PTSD can strike/return quite a long time after combat. A friend at work was 1st Cav. in country in 1970. One night there was a sound and a dark shape coming through the wire and he fired his grenade launcher and killed a 10-11 yo child, probably coming into the post to steal food etc. What really bothered him was they never knew if it was a boy or girl due to the extent of the injuries. He eventually apparently got over the stress
When GW2 started in 2003 he started having recurrent nightmares of the event, almost every night and he was getting depressed. We have great health care at our employer but he really could not get a civvie pshrink to understand. He came to me as VA had a 3 month wait for initial psych appointments and my ex-wife and her new husband are both senior types with the VA. Also, intake person at the VA said it was not clear his problems were service related (nightmares about Vietnam FFS). The ex got him in the door and he got assigned a pshrink who is USAF GW1 vet and now he is doing great.
The needs of vets are very different than the needs of the civilian population and they really need MD's, Nurses, rehab specialists who can meet those needs. The needs of the vets are the same whether they are US or UK. Good luck getting appropriate care for your guys.
We need to make sure that this never goes away, I think your right nottyash, the governement would rather this just went away. they don't know how to handle it, and it upsets voters across the country when they learn about how the armed forces are treated, especially the injured, even labour voters have hearts, and the government does not want to loose them of course.
So lets make sure this stays in the headlines, I remember getting a reply to a letter I sent to the last defence sec about armed forces hospitals, and the fact that there was not enough people to fill one ward let alone a complete hospital, how things have changed. Bet there is enough to fill a large one now,