Forgotten by the VA


U.S. Marine Lance Cpl. Evan Frickey, a dog handler with 3rd Marine Regiment, plays with Cookie, an improvised explosive device detection dog, while providing security at the Safar School compound, Garmsir district, Afghanistan, on March 18, 2012. DoD photo by Cpl. Reece Lodder, U.S. Marine Corps

Recent data from the VA shows approximately 22 veterans commit suicide daily.  This has been an increasing trend following the aftermath of two prolonged wars in Iraq and Afghanistan

In a review by the VA Inspector General’s Office, investigators found that 30 percent of high risk mental health cases reviewed showed missed follow-up appointments by case managers. 

These promised follow up appointments were set up to prevent tragic suicides committed by our veterans.

Furthermore, evidence has shown that approximately 28 percent of low risk mental health patients also had case managers fail to follow up with promised appointments.

VA Undersecretary for Health Robert Petzel stated that he will be, “charging facilities with creating a local patient registry for follow-up on all patients discharged from inpatient mental health units.”

The VA Undersecretary further noted that the VHA will be following up with medical facilities to remind its staff to follow up with veterans who have missed mental health appointments.

If you or someone you know suffers from a mental health issue then please don’t hesitate to contact the Veterans Crisis Line.

 

The Veterans Crisis Line connects Veterans in crisis and their families and friends with qualified, caring Department of Veterans Affairs responders through a confidential toll-free hotline, online chat, or text. Veterans and their loved ones can call 1-800-273-8255 and Press 1, chat online, or send a text message to 838255 to receive confidential support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.

 

Originally published by the US Veteran Tribune. All rights reserved. 2013

 

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