April 02, 2015

Ex-troops with highest suicide risk often don't qualify for mental care

Featuring Phillip Carter

The largest study to date of recent military and veteran suicides has identified two high-risk groups of former troops who are generally ineligible for the psychiatric care afforded to all others who served: those forced out of the military for misconduct and those who enlisted but were quickly discharged for other problems.

In each of those groups, an average of 46 of every 100,000 former service members committed suicide each year — more than double the rate for veterans with honorable discharges.

The findings are likely to spur debate over whether efforts to stem veteran suicides are targeting the right people and to strengthen calls to expand access to benefits and care — especially for those who blame post-traumatic stress disorder or other war-related problems for their misconduct and subsequent dismissals from the military.

Read the full article at The Los Angeles Times.

  • Phillip Carter

    Senior Fellow and Director, Military, Veterans, and Society Program

    Phillip Carter is Senior Fellow and Director of the Military, Veterans, and Society Program at the Center for a New American Security.  His research focuses on issues facing v...