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Vets At Risk Of Suicide Not Getting Adequate Post-Discharge Care: Report

by Lisa Chedekel | May 9, 2013 10:35am
(3) Comments | Commenting has expired
Posted to: Health Care, Veterans Affairs

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Nearly a third of veterans deemed at high risk for suicide don’t receive the recommended follow-up care after they’ve been discharged from Veterans Health Administration inpatient mental health facilities, according to a new report from the VA inspector general.

The report — which comes as the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs grapples with a rise in suicides that claim an estimated 22 veterans’ lives a day — recommends that the VA take action to improve post-discharge follow-up for patients with acute mental health problems.

The VA requires its mental health clinicians to evaluate patients considered at high risk for suicide at least weekly for the 30 days after their discharge from Veterans Health Administration (VHA) mental health care. But of 215 patients whose medical records were examined by the inspector general’s office, 65, or 30 percent, did not receive all of their follow-up evaluations, the report shows. Records of 33 percent of the 215 patients did not contain documentation that a suicide-prevention coordinator or other case manager had made attempts at contact.

Click here to continue reading Lisa’s report.

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(3) Comments

posted by: ASTANVET | May 9, 2013  2:33pm

I won’t get into my defense of the VA - they have issues, but I have not seen any issues with regards to mental health screening or treatment… quite the opposite actually.  But for those out there who have issues, and if you’re even contemplating suicide there are resources available at The Connecticut Military Support Program (MSP)1-866-251-2913

Reach out - talk to your peers - talk to a counselor - just reach out.

posted by: Joebigjoe | May 9, 2013  3:24pm

This is pathetic. 60 Minutes did a very good piece the other night on vets with traumatic brain injury. Its all related.

The issue is that we should be ashamed as a country that private donations are leading the way in buidling hi tech centers to help vets with TBI. Its good we have people that do that, but its not good that they are leading the way. The govt should lead the way with funds for this, get rid of the red tape, and get these people into care to help them through this. If your brain has you so messed up then it’s horrible that this leads to suicide. Help them out

posted by: Simon Peter Gruber | May 9, 2013  3:58pm

This is just horrible. We ask so much of these people and then we ignore them when they come back. We can’t even protect our own.