Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Mental Illness Accounting for More Military Discharges


The number of soldiers forced to leave the Army solely because of a mental disorder has increased by 64 percent from 2005 to 2009 and accounts for one in nine medical discharges, according to Army statistics.

Last year, 1,224 soldiers with a mental illness, such as post-traumatic stress disorder, received a medical discharge. That was an increase from 745 soldiers in 2005, or about 7 percent of medical discharges that year, according to personnel statistics provided to USA TODAY.

The trend matches other recent indicators that show a growing emotional toll on a military that has been fighting for seven years in Iraq and nine years in Afghanistan, the Army and veterans advocates say.

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