Thursday, January 21, 2016

Civilian Doctors Still Don't Understand Veterans

This is why veterans do not want to see private doctors but Congress won't fix the VA. They want to kill it!

Doctors outside the VA need to know more about the veterans they treat
University Of Michigan
by Monica Lypson And Paula Thompson Ross
The Conversation
January 21, 2016
"But caring for veterans isn't just about being able to diagnose PTSD or depression. It's also about understanding who they are and where they've been."
Civilian doctors might not know that their patients have served in the military. In this photo Marines march around the World Trade Center memorial after participating in a memorial run in 2012. Credit: MarineCorps NewYork/Flickr
Each year the military discharges over 240,000 veterans to reintegrate into civilian society. It's a professional transition, but it's also a personal one.

Veterans go from TRICARE, the Department of Defense's own health care system, to navigating the ins and outs of the civilian health care system. Under TRICARE, military service members are cared for in a manner that meets their needs. When they're discharged, their new health care providers might not know that they were ever in the military.

Asking "Have you served in the military?" may seem like a minor issue, but it's actually much more important than you might think. And it's a question that few doctors make a point of asking, even though many medical residents and medical students receive all or part of their clinical training at VA medical centers and hospitals.

In fact, Jeffrey Brown, a professor at Weill Cornell Medical College and a Vietnam veteran, has called it the "unasked question." When physicians don't ask, they may miss critical parts of their patient's medical history, making it harder to provide the best possible care.
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