How many of the 250,000 “other-than-honorable discharges” in the Vietnam-era were due to PTSD?


173 Airborne Brigade in a firefight on Hill 823 during the Vietnam War. Photo: U. S. Army, Wikipedia Commons Date not given.

In an article (9/4/14) Washington Post reporter Dan Lamothe provides an   overview of Sec. Hagel’s medical guidance on PTSD and less than honorable discharges. He provides this background information:  “The lawsuit said 250,000 Vietnam-era veterans received other-than-honorable discharges, and that 80,000 of them could have post-traumatic stress.”  A VA Fact Sheet gives the number of veterans deployed to the Vietnam War (1964-1975) as 3,403,000; Battle Deaths: 47,434; Other Deaths (In Theater); 10,786 Other Deaths in Service (Non-Theater); 32,000.

Five veterans, Vietnam Veterans of America, Vietnam Veterans of America Connecticut State Council and the National Veterans Council for Legal Redress were represented by Yale Law School’s Veterans Legal Services Clinic.

Yale’s article and press release is here: (LINK) Yale has produced a great Fact Sheet (after Hagel’s (9/3/14) memo here:  (LINK)

VA  Pub. IB-10-488 (2/14) Other than Honorable Discharges and VA Health Care appears to be the most recent Fact Sheet.

A big “Thank You” to YLS and the Vietnam Veterans of America for being proactive for marginalized veterans who have been denied VA health care due to their bad discharges. Veterans in the 15 states where Medicaid has not been expanded, and the seven who are still “talking about it” they may be shut out of public/private health care–unless they can afford insurance coverage through their employer.  Any of these veterans infected with HCV will probably not get treatment and that’s wrong.  The orange states also have large general veteran populations and veteran sub-populations infected with HCV.


Graphic from Kaiser Health Foundation. Click image to go to article.

The Vietnam Veterans of America is also taking on “Personality Disorder” dismissals, especially in the Coast Guard.  So again, Thank you. 

About Laura

NW Vermont.
This entry was posted in Guest authors, HCV Health, HCV Risks (documented), HOMELESS VETERANS, Medical News, Medicare for VETS, PTSD, VA Health Care, Vietnam Disease Issues, Vietnam War history and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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