"SOTU: Veterans Health Care Has Gotten Worse Under Bush"
Bush said: “Over the past 7 years, we have increased funding for veterans by more than 95 percent. As we increase funding, we must also reform our veterans system to meet the needs of a new war and a new generation.”
FACT — 1.8 MILLION VETERANS LACK HEALTH INSURANCE: “The new study, published in the American Journal of Public Health, estimated that in 2004 nearly 1.8 million veterans were uninsured and unable to get care in veterans’ facilities.” [New York Times, 11/9/07]
FACT — NUMBER OF UNINSURED VETERANS INCREASED BETWEEN 2000 AND 2004: “Just under two million veterans (12.7 percent of non-elderly veterans) were uninsured in 2004, up 290,000 since 2000, the study published in the December, 2007 issue of the American Journal of Public Health found.” [Harvard Science, 10/30/07]
FACT — NEARLY 20 PERCENT OF VETERANS RETURNING FROM IRAQ HAVE MILD TRAUMATIC BRAIN INJURIES: “Screening efforts show 10% to 20% of Marines and soldiers returning from Afghanistan and Iraq may have suffered this wound, according to the Army. The task force last May found that ‘major gaps’ in identifying and treating the injury ‘were created by a lack of coordination and policy-driven approaches.’” [USA Today, 1/18/08]
FACT — NUMBER OF PTSD CASES INCREASING DRAMATICALLY: “The number of Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans seeking treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder from the Department of Veterans Affairs jumped by nearly 20,000 — almost 70% — in the 12 months ending June 30, VA records show.” [USA Today, 10/18/07]