Still more problems with endless war. Nearly 20 percent of military service members who have come home from fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan, or 300,000 in total, report symptoms of post traumatic stress disorder or major depression, according to a new RAND Corporation study. Only slightly more than half have those veterans have sought treatment, largely because there is a fear that seeking treatment will harm their career, and even among those who sought treatment, only half received treatment that researchers would categorize as even "minimally adequate."
Nineteen percent of returning service members experienced a possible traumatic brain injury while deployed, and 7 percent report that they suffered a probable brain injury and currently suffer from PTSD and/or major depression. The RAND researchers estimate that PTSD and depression among veterans will cost the nation as much as $6.2 billion in the two years following after their deployment through direct medical care as well as the costs for lost productivity and suicide. They also found that investing in high-quality treatment could save up to $2 billion. That is, if we were to do that. Instead we keep sending people off to war and not providing them the services they need when they return. That's supporting the troops all right.