Showing posts with label Ministry of Defence. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Ministry of Defence. Show all posts

Sunday, February 25, 2018

UK Troops with PTSD get phone linkup to help

New phone helpline for troops with mental health problems is launched
The Telegraph
February 25, 2018
"I will be working personally with the service chiefs to make sure there isn't a single person in the Armed Forces who doesn't know where to turn in times of trouble."

A helpline to give troops suffering from mental health problems round-the-clock support is being launched.

Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson has announced an extra £20 million in funding to pay for the hotline and other new support services over the next decade.

It follows calls by campaigners, including Lord Dannatt, former head of the British Army, for more help for struggling soldiers.

Mr Williamson said it was "simply unacceptable" that troops should suffer in silence.

"It is our duty to ensure we do all we can for our world-class personnel," he told the Mail on Sunday.

The helpline will be funded by the Ministry of Defence and run with the charity Combat Stress.

Lord Dannatt said the new helpline, which opens at midday on Sunday, was a "massive improvement" in support for troops.

The Military Mental Health Helpline can be called on 0800 323 4444.
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Thursday, April 16, 2015

UK:Almost 1,000 Personnel Required Psychiatric Treatment After Taking Lariam

Almost 1,000 members of Armed Forces require psychiatric treatment after being given anti-Malaria drug linked to mental health problems
Daily Mail
15 April 2015

Almost 1,000 personnel required psychiatric treatment after taking drug
They were prescribed anti-malarial drug Lariam by the Ministry of Defence
The discredited product's side effects include psychosis and hallucinations
Retired Major General Alastair Duncan is currently in a psychiatric unit
He was prescribed the drug prior to a deployment in Sierra Leone

A retired major general is among 1,000 British service personnel requiring psychiatric treatment after taking an anti-malarial drug issued by the Ministry of Defence.

New figures released by the MoD show that since 2008, 994 personnel have been treated for mental health issues after having been prescribed Lariam.

Despite Lariam - the brand name for the drug mefloquine - being banned by the U.S. military due to concerns over side effects, the MoD has ignored appeals to stop prescribing it in what critics say is an escalating 'scandal'.
Major-General Alastair Duncan (pictured) is currently in a psychiatric unit after having been given the drug prior to a deployment in Sierra Leone

According to The Independent's Jonathan Owen, retired Major General Alastair Duncan is currently in a psychiatric unit following a Post Traumatic Stress Disorder episode four months ago.

Maj-Gen Duncan was given the drug Lariam before a deployment to Sierra Leone.

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We did know about this, but they just stopped talking about it.

Links to medications suspected with non-combat deaths
April 27, 2004 DoD, VA to study malaria drug’s side effects Associated Press

The Department of Defense and the Department of Veterans Affairs will study the side effects of Lariam, a drug given to servicemen to prevent malaria, Pentagon spokesman Jim Turner said.

The use of Lariam came up in investigations of murders and murder-suicides involving Fort Bragg soldiers in the summer of 2002, when four soldiers were accused of killing their wives. Two of those soldiers committed suicide immediately and a third killed himself in jail.

The three soldiers who killed themselves had served in Afghanistan, where Lariam is routinely used by U.S. troops. The fourth, who is still awaiting trial, did not serve there.

A November 2002 report by the office of the Army Surgeon General said two of the four soldiers had taken Lariam, but the Army would not say which. The report said Lariam probably did not factor in the killings.

Turner said a subcommittee of the Armed Forces Epidemiological Board met two weeks ago to consider ways to study the use of Lariam among service members. A Veterans Affairs spokeswoman said the VA will review the issue but has not issued a report on the study.

Lariam, which is also known as mefloquine, is routinely prescribed to soldiers working in countries where malaria is a problem. Some people have blamed it for causing psychotic reactions, including depression, hallucinations and thoughts of suicide.

Doctor: Anti-malarial drug may be harmful
Army Times

In the past six weeks, Dr. Michael Hoffer has treated nine service members who returned from Iraq or Afghanistan unable to walk a straight line or stand still without staggering. Some said objects appeared to spin around them for more than an hour at a time.

A Navy commander and director of the Department of Defense Spatial Orientation Center at Naval Medical Center, San Diego, Hoffer believes the problems are linked to a drug called Lariam "known generically as mefloquine" that the military gives to troops to prevent malaria.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., has urged the Pentagon to set a timeline for a Defense Department study, announced in March, of negative effects from Lariam and other anti-malarial drugs.

And then there were more

VA Warns Doctors About Lariam, United Press International, 25 June 2004

And even more on Wounded Times for Lariam

Sunday, August 26, 2012

MOD admits taking secret pictures of KIA soldiers

Ministry of Defence admits to taking secret pictures of every soldier's body killed in Afghanistan and Iraq
26 August 2012

The Ministry of Defence has admitted secretly taking photographs of the bodies of all British servicemen killed in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Soldiers' families have not been informed of the practice, which involves military police photographers opening body bags and taking pictures to be stored on a database.

The remains of more than 600 servicemen are believed to have been photographed, with many pictures showing severed body parts.
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Saturday, July 12, 2008

Half of British troops want to quit: survey

Half of British troops want to quit: survey
Michael Evans | July 11, 2008
BRITAIN'S ability to fight in Iraq and Afghanistan has been questioned as it emerged that almost half of all military personnel are ready to quit.

The first survey of attitudes across thearmy, navy and air force, released yesterday, reveals unprecedented levels of concern over equipment, morale andpay.

The research was conducted by the Ministry of Defence and involved more than 24,000 military personnel. It found the sense of overcommitment means that 47 per cent of soldiers and army officers think regularly of resigning.
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Wednesday, July 2, 2008

UK Veteran loses post-traumatic stress disorder claim

Ex-soldier loses post-traumatic stress disorder claim
A former soldier from Kidderminster who developed post-traumatic stress disorder after serving in Northern Ireland and Bosnia has lost his battle for damages.

Stephen Hibbert, now 40, had sued the Ministry of Defence for "substantial" compensation in a contested action at the High Court in London over an alleged failure to diagnose his condition in the early 1990s until it was too late to treat.

But on Wednesday Mr Justice Owen, the judge who heard the case, dismissed his claim and said: "One cannot but have the greatest sympathy for the claimant who loyally served his country, earning respect for his determination, enthusiasm and leadership on operational tours of duty in Northern Ireland and Bosnia.

"He is now suffering from a severely disabling psychiatric condition for which the prognosis is very poor. But sadly he is the victim of the stresses to which serving soldiers on operational tours of duty can be exposed, not to any culpable want of care on the part of the defendant (MoD). His claim must be dismissed."

Mr Hibbert's case was that in May 1994 an Army consultant psychiatrist failed to diagnose post-traumatic stress disorder. His condition deteriorated and became "entrenched", said Mr Mansfield, so that by the time he was diagnosed in the autumn of 1996 he was "beyond treatment".
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Monday, February 4, 2008

UK:1 out of 14 soldiers unfit deploy again

Army depleted by long-term sick and injured: report
12 hours ago

LONDON (AFP) — The manpower strength of the army has been markedly depleted by sickness and injury, The Daily Telegraph reported on Monday.

According to figures it obtained from the Ministry of Defence, of the 10 battalions that recently deployed to, or are currently in, Afghanistan and Iraq, more than 400 soldiers were left behind because they were "unfit to deploy".

That works out to around one in every 14 of the soldiers that were sent to the two countries.

The report comes after a parliamentary committee warned a week ago that pressure on Britain's military to meet its commitments in Afghanistan and Iraq has battered morale and spurred experienced officers to leave.

There are currently 7,700 British troops in Afghanistan, with a further 4,500 in Iraq.
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