Rules Eased for Vet PTSD Disability

Conservatives wary of $5 billion plan
By Emily Rauhala,  Newser User
Posted Jul 8, 2010 2:54 AM CDT
Retired Marine Maj. Gamal Awad suffers from post traumatic stress disorder.   (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)

(Newser) – A new rule will make it easier for American veterans to get disability payments for post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD. The $5 billion plan erases the need for warriors to document the specific horror, be it bomb blast or raid, that made them sick. That's especially good news for those who served in danger zones, but not necessarily on the front lines, because they won't have to prove a certain situation was sufficiently traumatic to trigger PTSD.

Vet groups welcomed the plan, but question whether it goes far enough since only military-backed docs can approve claims. Others think the plan goes too far. "It is destructive to give someone total and permanent disability when they are in fact capable of working," Sally Satel of the American Enterprise Institute tell the New York Times. "A job is the most therapeutic thing there is." (Read more PTSD stories.)

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