Statistics Don’t Lie
Veterans Disability Lawyer
The returning veterans from the recent wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are looking to be the most medically and mentally troubled generation of troops in the nation’s history. Of the 1.6 million returning troops, over 45% of them are seeking compensation for injuries sustained while in active duty; over double the VA’s projected estimates.
To make matters worse, these new veterans are claiming nine ailments a piece on average. This is up from theVietnamaverage of four per veteran, and the WWII rate of only two. Researchers suggest that an increased awareness of problems such as concussions and PTSD, combined with more troops surviving their wounds helps explain the increase in these numbers. Additionally, it would seem the VA’s willingness to recognize certain “soft” disabilities could be impacting this number. Thus, the historical averages may be artificially low.
The numbers however aren’t the only things changing, the types of injuries sustained are also different from what the VA has seen before. With a majority of the injuries in our most recent wars being due to IEDs (Improvised Explosive Devices), the VA is seeing increases in hearing loss, blindness and damage to lower extremities. The good news is that over 95% of troops injured inIraqandAfghanistanended up surviving their wounds.
As with any war, the cost of caring for veterans rises for several decades and peaks roughly 35 years after the conflict due to diseases brought upon by aging. With so many recent veterans filing more claims than ever before, our country needs to start preparing for a rather large bill in the coming years. The VA is struggling with processing these claims accurately and needs to improve its service delivery.
Still, despite these concerns and the increasing costs of our returning veterans, the most important thing for us to remember is that they’re returning at all.
To learn more or see the original article, please visit: http://www.usatoday.com/news/health/story/2012-05-28/veteran-disability/55250092/1#.T8SntzI-A5s.email