Mental Health Access for Veterans

Mental Health Access for Veterans

Description of the Gap and Population Affected

Mental health access is an imperative service that the American Veterans must access with ease as the rates of traumatic and mental illnesses tend to bound this populace(Devi, 2011). As such, in regards to the American Public Health Association (APHA) Policy statements, there is need to address the gap with new policies that will foster improved mental health for the American Veterans(APHA, 2014). Additionally, studies suggest that merely fifty percent of the returning veterans who need mental health will receive these services. Mental Health Access for Veterans

Historical Antecedents

Notably, veterans refer to the soldiers who battle for to safeguard the US affairs. Studies suggest these veterans are predisposed to experiences on the battlefield that might culminate mental disorders such as PTSD(Shiner, Drake, Watts, Desai, & Schnurr, 2012).


Socioeconomic background

Iraqi and Afghanistan wars have been the most extensively sustained military operations ever since the Vietnam wars. Statistically, 2.2 million troops have been sent to battle, and approximately, the battle has led to 6,600 deaths coupled with 48,000 injuries have been experienced(Hoge, Auchterlonie, & Milliken, 2006). As such, the rate of deployment has now increased to 28%. Therefore, this group of individuals works in harsh conditions that lead to development the need to fill in the gap for mental care to embrace a healthy humanity.


Research suggests that allowing the veterans to be provided with mental health assistance has proven that individuals will be able to live happier with their families after returning from the battleground(Friedman, 2005). Also, veterans tend to exhibit violent nature after returning from duty, as such filling this gap for access will help them behave humanely, regardless of the experiences they had during the war(Woodhead et al., 2011).Mental Health Access for Veterans


Conclusively, if the gap is not addressed, returning vets will be significantly affected by the mental disorder that might culminate a rise in PTSD cases, substance abuse cases, anxiety, and sexual trauma. As they voluntarily decided to save the nations and settles conflicts, the only payback that veterans can get is supporting them with helping them access mental health services with ease.


APHA. (2014). Removing Barriers to Mental Health Services for Veterans. Retrieved March 20, 2017, from

Devi, S. (2011). Mental health care for US veterans heavily criticised. The Lancet, 377(9783), 2071–2072.

Friedman, M. J. (2005). Veterans’ Mental Health in the Wake of War. New England Journal of Medicine, 352(13), 1287–1290.

Hoge, C. W., Auchterlonie, J. L., & Milliken, C. S. (2006). Mental health problems, use of mental health services, and attrition from military service after returning from deployment to Iraq or Afghanistan. JAMA : The Journal of the American Medical Association, 295(9), 1023–1032.

Shiner, B., Drake, R. E., Watts, B. V, Desai, R. a, & Schnurr, P. P. (2012). Access to VA services for returning veterans with PTSD. Military Medicine, 177(7), 814–22.Mental Health Access for Veterans

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