Intended for healthcare professionals


More help is needed to treat mental health problems in military personnel, say MPs

BMJ 2014; 349 doi: (Published 30 October 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;349:g6538
  1. Zosia Kmietowicz
  1. 1The BMJ

UK MPs have asked the Ministry of Defence how it intends to support the increasing number of servicemen and women who seek help for mental health problems, saying that more resources are essential.

In its latest report the House of Commons Defence Committee said that armed force personnel as a whole had a similar rate of mental health problems to that of the general population—about 20%.1 But those in combat roles, reservists, and those who spend a longer time on the front line were twice as likely to have post-traumatic stress disorder than were civilians (6-7% v 3-4%)—a situation that the ministry does not understand or know how to deal with, said MPs. Armed service personnel were also more likely than the general population to seek …

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