KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Washington Woman Spearheading Drive For Suicide Prevention For Service Members

McClatchy / Tacoma News Tribune: As Military Struggles With Suicides, A Push For Seeking Help
A Washington state social worker is circulating a petition urging federal lawmakers and the military to adopt a policy declaring that service members shouldn't be punished if they seek help for behavioral health issues, such as post-traumatic stress. Patricia Bailey, 45, believes the lack of a firm policy on whether service members could be held back in their careers for seeking counseling is one of the main obstacles keeping people in the military from pursuing treatment. … She's targeting a gray area in the military's evolving suicide prevention and post-traumatic stress programs (Ashton, 9/5).

NPR reports on the military's efforts to merge two flagship hospitals.

NPR: 'Change Is Hard': Army, Navy Hospitals Merge
There's a lot of good sense behind closing two famous and nearby military hospitals and merging them into the new Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. ... With bright new buildings and the latest technology, the new hospital promises better care to service members, veterans and injured troops from the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. But the Army and Navy each have their own proud traditions. So bridging those separate, and often competing, cultures will be the key to truly offering better medical care (Shapiro, 9/2).

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