H.R.5605 - UNITED STATES-ISRAEL PTSD COLLABORATIVE RESEARCH ACT


116th Congress (2019-2020)

Status:

Introduced

Issue Area:

U.S. – Israel Alliance

ICAN Position:

Strong Support

Venue:

Federal / U.S. House

The Israeli-American Civic Action Network is in strong support of this bill which establishes a grant program for collaborative efforts between the United States and Israel to advance research on post-traumatic stress disorders. The Department of Defense, in coordination with the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of State, will award grants to eligible academic institutions or nonprofit entities in the United States. Work will be conducted by the eligible U.S.-based entity and an entity in Israel under a joint research agreement.

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Details


U.S. - Israel PTSD Collaboration Act

Findings:

  1. The Department of Veterans Affairs reports that between 11 and 20 percent of veterans who served in Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in a given year. In addition, that figure amounts to about 12 percent of Gulf War veterans and up to 30 percent of Vietnam veterans.
  1. The Department of Veterans Affairs reports that among women veterans of the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, almost 20 percent have been diagnosed with PTSD.
  1. In the United States, it is thought that 70 percent of Americans have experienced at least one traumatic event in their lifetime, and approximately 20 percent of those persons have struggled or continue to struggle with symptoms of PTSD.
  1. Studies show that PTSD has links to homelessness and substance abuse in the United States. The Department of Veterans Affairs estimates that approximately 11 percent of the homeless population are veterans and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration estimates that about 7 percent of veterans have a substance abuse disorder.
  1. Our ally Israel, under constant attack from terrorist groups, experiences similar issues with Israeli veterans facing PTSD symptoms. Tel Aviv University’s National Center for Traumatic Stress and Resilience found that 5 to 8 percent of combat soldiers experience some form of PTSD, and during wartime, that figure rises to 15 to 20 percent.
  1. Current treatment options in the United States focus on cognitive therapy, exposure therapy, or eye movement desensitization and reprocessing, but the United States must continue to look for more effective treatments. Several leading Israeli hospitals, academic institutions, and nonprofits dedicate research and services to treating PTSD.
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