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11:31 am
Wed February 13, 2013

Push for National Guard PTSD treatment advances

Credit Copyright- Oklahoma National Guard / !45th Returns to US soil

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — An Oklahoma Senate committee has approved a measure to improve the care given to Oklahoma National Guard members suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder.

The bill's sponsor, Republican Sen. Brian Crain, says many guard members with post-traumatic stress disorder don't get proper treatment. His bill, passed Wednesday by the Senate Veterans and Military Affairs Committee, calls for training for members' caregivers on treating PTSD and traumatic brain injuries.

Crain says the bill is intended to bridge a gap in guard members' mental health treatment. He says full-time military employees have greater access to treatment resources through the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, while guard members must rely on their states for help.

According to Pentagon data, more veterans died by suicide than in combat in Iraq and Afghanistan last year.