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Kerry: VA Strengthens Treatment for Post-Traumatic Stress

Press Release

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Location: Washington, DC

Senator John Kerry (D-Mass.) today applauded the Obama Administration for making it easier for veterans suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) to receive the benefits and treatment they deserve.

The Department of Veterans Affairs today issued new rules that allow veterans from all wars whose war zone experiences caused traumatic after-effects to receive aid and treatment for their conditions. Kerry offered the same proposal in 2009 when he introduced the COMBAT PTSD Act, or Compensation Owed for Mental Health Based on Activities in Theater Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Like the new rules announced today, Kerry's bill eliminated the requirement that veterans fill out lengthy and often confusing forms to document their traumatic experiences, such as bomb blasts or mortar attacks, before being enrolled in PTSD programs.

"Our nation has a sacred responsibility to care for our war wounded when they return home from defending our country," said Sen. Kerry. "Today, the VA has taken a giant step forward preparing to treat the modern day injuries of modern day warfare. When it comes to combating PTSD, anything less than the full measure of commitment is simply unacceptable."

For years, Senator Kerry has fought on behalf of veterans suffering from PTSD. The Senator has consistently delivered funding to Massachusetts veteran treatment centers, has authored legislation to secure millions nationally in critical funding to the nation's Veteran's Administration Centers, and in 2006 penned an op-ed calling attention to the mental battle wounds of war.


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