Co-morbid Chronic Illnesses across the Lifespan and Cross Transitions of Care and Health
About 22.5 million military veterans are living in the United States (Washington et al. 2015).
This number is expected to increase rapidly as more military personnel return from Afghanistan and Iraq.
Veterans are a multifaceted population with a distinct culture which includes but not limited to obedience to command, implicit patterns of communication, codes of conduct, selfless duty, ethos, customs, and values.
Veterans experience a traumatic brain injury, substance abuse disorders, post-traumatic stress and mental health disorders at disproportionate rates compared to their civilian counterparts (Washington et al. 2015).
The purpose of this presentation is to discuss the adequacy of mental services available to veterans, services available to this population, factors which influence veterans to need for medical health services, eligibility for services, the cost for receiving such services, and recommendations for improving the available services.
Adequacy Mental Health Services available to Veterans
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and Department of Defence (DOD) health care systems focuses on the accessibility of mental health care for U.S military veterans.
Military Healthcare System through the DOD provides health professionals, resources, and necessary direction to promote the health of military veterans.
The MHS provides direct care to military veterans through clinics and military treatment facilities (MTFs).
Service members who are active on duty and their dependent family members are also legible to eligible to receive care at an MTF on a space-available basis (Hoge et al. 2014).
Sponsored services that are available to veterans with co-morbid chronic mental illness
The office of MHS focuses on ensuring that all veterans have access to essential mental health care services.