U.S. Congress to investigate mental health care for Iraq veterans

A team from the U.S. Congress will be dispatched to Fort Carson Army base to examine mental health care for Iraq war veterans after complaints that some soldiers with brain damage have been misdiagnosed, according to the congressional investigative arm.

The advocacy group Veterans for America has said it is probing as many as 40 cases where Fort Carson soldiers with brain damage or stress-related injuries may have been misdiagnosed with personality disorders.

But Fort Carson spokeswoman Dee McNutt Friday said, "We welcome all visitors to look into the systems."

The date of the team's visit to Fort Carson, which will focus its investigation on system-wide mental health issues, is yet to be set.

Last month Fort Carson released a study saying that 276 soldiers at Fort Carson had been discharged since 2003 because of personality disorders, and 56 of them also had post-traumatic stress disorder.

The report also found that nearly 2,400 of the 13,400 troops it had sent to Iraq, or 18 percent, had suffered some form of brain damage from insurgents' explosive devices.

Fort Carson is the first Army post to announce it will try using brain-scan equipment to help detect brain injuries in soldiers returning from Iraq. The equipment is not generally used in the Army, although a congressional task force this week recommended that it be employed throughout the service.

Source: Xinhua

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