Each and every day, between 18 and 22 veterans commit suicide. These suicides happen for a number of reasons. However, many trace back to issues during time in the service or afterward. Certainly, poor treatment and long waiting times are not helpful. Altogether, these issues add up to a major crisis for the country. What other group faces 7,000 unnecessary deaths a year?
Recently, one of the larger trends involves suicide in VA parking lots. Military.com reported on the disturbing incidents.
These deaths happen here for many reasons. Part is due to vets not wanting family members finding them. In other cases, poor care may be a factor. One Navy vet, 76 year old Peter Kaisen, shot himself outside the Northport Veterans Affairs Medical Center in New York. He was allegedly denied access to an emergency room doctor for a mental health check. An Army and Afghanistan vet, John Toombs, hanged himself outside a TN center. He stated in a video it was due to being unable to visit the care he needed.
Of particular concern is the risk of opioid use and abuse surrounding the VA. In particular, opioids are overused to treat physical pain. This opens the real risk of addiction and worse. On top of this, since 2001 the rate of suicide among veterans increased 32%. The risk of suicide is 21% among veterans than the average adult.
What are Some Options for Families of U.S. Military Veterans?
This is a pain we know all too well. Our lead attorney, Michael Ehline, is a disabled former Marine. We feel the pain of our armed forces and their family. It is often a thankless job, but only the finest answer the call.
Families have several options. One includes an formal inquiry of the VA’s care of their beloved. Another includes negligence litigation against anyone that wasn’t doing their job. Furthermore, Ehline Law’s resources are especially open for veterans and their families. If you’re facing hard times and don’t know who to call, we are always available, 24/7.