TRACTS Study: Vets May Have Accelerated Aging
With extended tours in Afghanistan and Iraq, the veteran population may be aging at an accelerated rate. There appears to be a link between PTSD and TBI in the poor health outcomes for vets.
Does anyone find this surprising?
Preliminary research on veterans and active-duty members of the military shows that symptoms like hypertension, elevated cholesterol and glucose levels, and obesity, which are typically seen in older Americans, are plaguing members of the military at a much earlier age, according to Regina McGlinchey, co-director of the Transitional Research Center for TBI and Stress Disorders (TRACTS).
“Other work prior to this has shown a link between PTSD and risk for metabolic syndrome,” said Dr. Ann Rasmusson, a research affiliate with the National Center for PTSD and TRACTS. ”We think that there may be common underlying risk factors for both, plus the trauma and stress they are exposed to may also have influence on cardiovascular risk.”
The center, which began testing veterans who suffer from brain injuries and PTSD in 2010, has seen more than 270 veterans and active-duty members. The center sees veterans of all ages, but the focus has been on those in their 20s and early 30s.
Federal Government Lost 115,000 Experienced Employees:
Last year the federal government lost 115,000 employees, mostly through retirement and resignation. Among those who left, 75,200 of them were the most knowledgeable and experienced, having served between 10 and 40 years, according to new data. Among the occupations that lost most talents were operations, medical and public health, investigations and inspections, accounting and budgets, engineering and architecture and business and commerce. The Army, with its wrong-headed push to get rid of workers through buyouts, early outs, and layoffs, unsurprisingly posted the highest attrition rate of 8%. About one third of the employees the government lost since 2008 are veterans – not a surprise since one in four federal employees are veterans and nearly one in two Defense Department employees are veterans. While the number of people who leave the government has gone up most years since 2009, the number of new hires has gone down every year since 2009.
“What does that mean to the American people?” asks AFGE National PresidentJ. David Cox Sr. “It means a much longer wait at a government office or a 1-800 number. It means fewer food inspectors, doctors, researchers, engineers, claims processors, psychologists. It means lower public safety and standard of living for every American.”
Recent pay cuts, unpaid furloughs, a government shutdown, and a penalty for new hires have only made things worse, Cox said. “The American people need to stand up to Congress and demand that they stop giving away billions every year to corporations at the expense of public safety and services.”
I am not surprised. My husband had a heart attack at age 39 two months after he got back from a 9 month ship deployment in Desert Storm where the ship was in combat. Fortunately he did survive but has multiple serious health problems now.
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