Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a phenomenon which has existed since humanity began.  When applied to those who experienced combat it was once referred to as 'shell shock', then 'battle fatigue', and now PTSD.

Bush has his heart in the right place in wanting a change in semantics to remove the word 'disorder' from the term, but as usual with politicians, he can't see the reality of the issue, and as usual it's a political issue which will have no meaningful effect.  He claims PTSD is an injury, not a disorder.  Maybe it's not a 'disorder', but it's also not an 'injury' in the sense it can be objectively observed like a physical injury.  Some who experience the emotional or physical trauma and stress of battle are temporarily or permanently changed, and others are largely unaffected depending on the individuals' mental strength or character, but it's impossible to verify or measure it's existence.

Since 'PTSD' was officially acknowledged as a military disability it has become a massive burden and disruption of available veteran health resources, and probably one of the most abused frauds involving veterans' benefits.

Veterans with massive physical injuries are not being properly cared for or compensated, while some rear echelon clerk who claims PTSD because he or she looked out their office window and saw a body bag being loaded on an aircraft and once heard some nearby mortar fire, is treated the same as a soldier who finally broke after three tours in actual combat and watching his fellow soldiers being killed and never claimed to have PTSD, but was observed to now be unfit for duty.  Unmerited claims bog the system down and prevent or delay the claims of worthy victims.

How to determine if PTSD is the result of valid trauma or a consequence of a pre-existing mental frailty, or simply fraud?  In my opinion, only the later example above should be considered a valid PTSD injury.

Here's a prime example of how the 'system' can become twisted:

No comments:

Post a Comment