The soldiers on antipsychotics experiment

This report makes it sound like the Dept. of Defense has decided that the best thing to do for soldiers with psychological problems is keep them supplied with lots of pills.  Is this what the expression “Support the Troops” means?

“…at least one in six service members is on some form of psychiatric drug. What’s more, many troops take a mix of antidepressants and antipsychotics to prevent nightmares, for instance, or an anti-epileptic to reduce headaches, according to The Military Times. Meanwhile, there’s not much research on these cocktails….

“It’s really a large-scale experiment. We are experimenting with changing people’s cognition and behavior,” Grace Jackson, a former Navy psychiatrist, tells the paper. At a hearing of the Personnel Subcommittee of the Senate Commiteee on Armed Services, US Senator Jim Webb, a Virginia Democrat, called the sharp increase in prescription drug use among the military “stunning.”

A Military Times investigation of electronic records obtained from the Defense Logistics Agency shows DLA spent $1.1 billion on common psychiatric and pain meds from 2001 to 2009, and that use of psychiatric drugs increased about 76 percent overall, with some drug types more than doubling since the start of the current wars in Iraq and Afghanistan….”

via Why Are So Many Soldiers On Antipsychotics? // Pharmalot.

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