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Opening Statement of Hon. Michael H. Michaud , Chairman, Subcommittee on Health, and a Representative in Congress from the State of Maine

I would like to welcome everyone to our subcommittee hearing.  We are here today to talk about PTSD Treatment and Research in the Department of Veterans Affairs. 

Post-traumatic stress disorder is among the most common diagnoses made by the Veterans Health Administration.  Of the approximately 300,000 veterans from Operations Enduring and Iraqi Freedom who have accessed VA health care, nearly 20 percent –60,000 veterans- have received a preliminary diagnosis of PTSD.  The VA also continues to treat veterans from Vietnam and other conflicts who have PTSD.

With the release of the 2007 IOM report “Treatment of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder: An Assessment of the Evidence”, we learned that we still have much work to do in our understanding of how to best treat PTSD.  I hope that my colleagues will continue to work with me in supporting VA’s PTSD research programs.

I look forward to hearing testimony today from several organizations that are working to provide comprehensive and cutting edge treatment to those with PTSD.  The committee recognizes that this is an important issue and one that will be with us for a long time to come.  We are committed to ensuring that all veterans receive the best treatment possible.