KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations.

Study: Nearly 1 in 5 Had Mental Illness Before Military Enlistment

The findings, published as three papers in JAMA Psychiatry, show that soldiers who join the military come in with much higher rates of mental illness than the general public.

Los Angeles Times: Nearly 1 In 5 Had Mental Illness Before Enlisting In Army, Study Says
Nearly 1 in 5 U.S. soldiers had a common mental illness, such as depression, panic disorder or ADHD, before enlisting in the Army, according to a new study that raises questions about the military's assessment and screening of recruits (Zarembo, 3/3).

WBUR: Study: Soldiers Enter Military With Higher Rates Of Mental Illness
As suicide rates among soldiers climbed to new highs four years ago, researchers prepared surveys for the largest study to date of mental health risk within the military. The findings, published as three papers in JAMA Psychiatry, show that soldiers who join the military come in with much higher rates of mental illness than the general public and that most suicides can be traced to these pre-enlistment conditions. Researchers organized 327 meetings at Army installations across the country in 2011. A total of 5,428 soldiers, some in large auditoriums, some in small field offices, filled out questionnaires that they knew would be matched to their administrative records (Bebinger, 3/4).

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