Report: Substance Abuse In Military A “Public Health Crisis.”

The AP (9/18) writes that “a new report says substance use and misuse among troops and their families has become a ‘public health crisis’ and that Pentagon methods for dealing with it are out-of-date.” The study, conducted by the Institute of Medicine, was requested by the Defense Department. Among its findings, “about 20 percent of active-duty service members reported they engaged in heavy drinking in 2008, the latest year for which data was available;” “Binge-drinking increased from 35 percent in 1998 to 47 percent in 2008;” and “the rate of medication misuse is rising.” Perhaps most troubling, the report also noted that “the armed forces’ programs and policies have not evolved to effectively address medication misuse and abuse.” One change the report suggested was the use of FDA-approved medication designed to combat addiction.

Related Links:

— “Study: Level of military substance abuse now a ‘public health crisis,’ Pentagon care outdated,”Associated Press, The Washington Post, September 17, 2012.

Posted in In The News.