Closing Thought–26Sep22

I have written many times about the rate and the causes of the suicides by our veterans. It appears that the numbers are higher than have been reported in the past.

The number of US military veterans who have died by suicide could be far higher than the Department of Veterans Affairs has reported, a new study indicates. America’s Warrior Partnership, which works to eliminate veteran suicide, found that in eight states, the number of suicides was 1.37 times higher than reported for 2014 to 2018. If that rate holds throughout the nation, the number of veterans dying by suicide each day would be about 24; the VA’s reported average for that period was 17.7, per NBC News. “We’re not pointing fingers at anyone,” said Jim Lorraine, the nonprofit’s president. “We’re just saying it’s sobering to look at the numbers.”

The VA bases its count on information provided by the counties where the person died, per Stars and Stripes. The new study, which took four years, went further to gather details about the veterans, working with the Department of Defense and checking state records. Other states could not release relevant data because of confidentiality restrictions, the preliminary report says. The VA’s process, missed veterans about 18% of the time, the study said. The University of Alabama and Duke University worked with the nonprofit. “It’s not the VA’s fault, Lorraine said. “The issue is the counties.”

Veterans Affairs released a statement defending its process. “We take every step possible to make sure that our veteran suicide data is accurate, because the first step to solving this problem is understanding it,” said press secretary Terrence Hayes. Loraine said he hopes more states will take part in the next phase of the study. Broader collaboration would improve the accuracy of the data, as well as prevention methods, he said. The VA’s 2020 report said more than 46,000 US adults died in suicides in 2018, more than 6,000 of them veterans. Another organization has found that suicide has killed four times as many US veterans as combat so far this century.

This problem should be far more important to the government than it is….we asked these people to give their all and then we put band-aids on their wounds instead of giving them the help they deserve.

For a damn change do something besides giving our veterans platitudes in place of adequate health care.

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

15 thoughts on “Closing Thought–26Sep22

  1. Not directly related, but the efforts by the government to rely on private organizations to care for our veterans isdisturbing. I believe that the same government who sends the military into harm’s way should be doing everything to care for our veterans without reservation. We shouldn’t be listening to washed-up country singers trying to capitalize on what I’ve always referred to as false patriotism. Veterans should never have to go to charities for support. If the government won’t support our veterans when they come home and need help, the government shouldn’t send troops in the first place.

    1. People like you should have worn the uniform before you start running your mouth about things that you know absolutely nothing about. The American VA has the best medical care system in the world and I should know because I have been using it for the past 56 years with zero complaints.

      1. Thank you for your service as well and note I did NOT attack the VA. I fully support my fellow veterans. I believe that more should be done. There is a difference between what I started and what you believe I stated.

      2. The VA is doing as much as it can do with the money they have …they are booked out for months now because America can’t keep their nose out of useless foreign entanglements and overload the medical care system ….nevertheless, if you have a need that concerns you, you can always call prime care and get a quick appointment with your assigned medical team or you can go to the VA emergency room where you are treated royally and quickly. If you want the VA to do more than they are already doing then I suggest you find a way to increase their funding substantially.

      3. Once again, we’re closer to agreeing than you think. We do send our military it into places more than we should. This leads to issues like vet suicides and need for services. Thankfully, I haven’t had need of the VA. I don’t advocate cutting any of their services. If the government wants to put troops into harms way, then the governshould be held accountable for all if the costs. And yes, that means we are all responsible because we elect the people who make the decision to commit troops and whether it not to adequately fund the support veterans were promised in the first place.

  2. As a veteran and as a patient at the Veterans’ Administration Medical Centers for the past 56 years, I take exception to your accusation that the VA gives us little more than band aids and platitudes.

    I have received exceptional care from the VA for all these years. I had a short period of time when I went to civilian doctors and I will tell you that civilian medicine does not even come close to comparing to that of the VA. Civilian doctors are in the business of making you come back to them as many times as possible before referring you to a specialist ..who refers you to other specialists — an endless merry go round …while the VA is in the business of trying to cure you of your ailments … I have a couple of long term chronic conditions and the VA has always been there for me and are doing a fine job helping me control the problems.

    I can always get an appointment when needed …no red tape … I am always respected and given the best possible care ….

    There are some fuddy duddy old Veterans who do nothing but complain because they apparently appreciate nothing but they are the exception.

    As to suicide prevention …I feel like the VA has one of the most intensive programs to help veterans with their suicide-related problems that can be found anywhere.

    The VA does everything in its power with the funding the government gives to it.

  3. I agree, there is too much silence about all these causes. As i remember it took more than two decades to see PTSD as an illness from which especially soldiers suffer. Thanks for mentioning his, Chuq! Excuse the late revisit. xx Michael

    1. Yeah, let’s do all we can to undermine the VA — a really patriotic thing to do! This line of BS is pathetic. It may have taken some time to recognize PTSD but they are on it now, aren’t they? The same with agent orange .. but they are on it now, aren’t they? Give the system credit for what it is doing and not give it hell for what it has not done because what they are doing far outweighs past faults in the system.

  4. We have a similar situation in parts of Britain. Ex-soldiers taking to drink and drugs, causing domestic violence, getting arrested, and in many cases committing suicide. It seems some of them just cannot cope with a return to civilian life after the military. Our government does run training programmes to get them into new careers or trades, but they lose that companionship they seemed to cherish. I have not been in the armed forces, so have no idea what the long-term solution is.
    Best wishes, Pete.

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