Veterans treatment for PTSD blocked by religion.

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U-said-it
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Veterans treatment for PTSD blocked by religion.

Post by U-said-it » Tue Nov 17, 2009 8:34 am

This is a bit ironic considering the science of psychology was practically jumpstarted by wars, most prominently WWII.
During the Iraq war, however, the great difficulty veterans experienced in getting psychiatric care—greater than before—was not a product of cost-cutting, but of conviction: many Bush administration officials believed that soldiers who supported the war would not face psychological problems, and if they did, they would find comfort in faith. In a resigned tone, one prominent researcher who worked for the VA, and asked that he not be identified because he was not authorized to speak to the press, explained that high-ranking officials believed that “Jesus fixes everything.” Benimoff and the others who returned with devastating psychological injuries found a faith-based bureau within the VA. At veterans’ hospitals, chaplains were conducting spirituality assessments of patients.

....

“God doesn’t like ugly,” one political appointee told Paul Sullivan, an analyst in the VA’s Veterans Benefits Administration, in a clumsy attempt to reduce the cost of caring for psychologically traumatized veterans. “You need to make the numbers lower.” ...

. . .

“They are too young” to be filing claims, and they are doing it “too soon.” [Deputy Assistant Secretary for Policy Michael McLendon] hit the table again. The claims, he said, are “costing us too much money,” and if the veterans “believed in God and country . . . they would not come home with PTSD.” At that point, he slammed his palm against the table a final time, making a loud smack. Everyone in the room fell silent.
http://bostonreview.net/BR34.6/mckelvey.php
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Re: Veterans treatment for PTSD blocked by religion.

Post by Ex-Cyber » Tue Nov 17, 2009 10:36 am

I think religion might just be a smokescreen here. To me this looks an awful lot like standard victim-blaming crap tarted up with religious ornaments to make it seem more righteous. This isn't too surprising either way, since victim-blaming is both a common tactic of hardcore Republicans and a common reaction to mental illness in general (i.e. if it's "all in your head" then you must either faking it or willing it to happen).
"You know, I have a great, wonderful, really original method of teaching antitrust law, and it kept 80 percent of the students awake. They learned things. It was fabulous." -- Justice Stephen Breyer
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