Psychology Association: Military Mental Health System Stressed Out

Sunday, February 25th 2007, 8:21 pm
By: News On 6

WASHINGTON (AP) Many Iraq war soldiers, veterans and their families are not getting needed psychological help because a stressed military's mental health system is overwhelmed and understaffed, a task force of psychologists found.

The co-chair of the task force was Michelle Sherman, a psychologist at the Veterans Administration Medical Center in Oklahoma City.

The panel's 67-page report calls for the immediate strengthening of the military mental health system.

It cites a 40 percent vacancy rate in active duty psychologists in the Army and Navy, resources diverted from family counselors and a weak transition for veterans leaving the military.

The findings were released today by the American Psychological Association.

The report found that more than three out of 10 soldiers met the criteria for a "mental disorder," but far less than half of those in need sought help.