Category: Department of Defense (DoD)

VA, Army Clinicians Rapidly Increase Prescribing of Novel Anticoagulants

VA, Army Clinicians Rapidly Increase Prescribing of Novel Anticoagulants

WASHINGTON — Use of novel anticoagulants has risen sharply both at the VA and in the Army in the last three years, freeing more atrial fibrillation patients from food restrictions and regular checks for coagulation time, as required when using warfarin.

Effective Treatments Touted for Insomnia That Affects Half of All Returning Troops

Effective Treatments Touted for Insomnia That Affects Half of All Returning Troops

PITTSBURGH, PA — Insomnia and other sleep disorders, which affect one out of every two servicemembers or veterans who have been involved in recent military operations, complicate co-morbid conditions and can be difficult to manage.

Leaner Fighting Forces Might Mean Slim Pickings for Recruiters

Leaner Fighting Forces Might Mean Slim Pickings for Recruiters

WASHINGTON — Even as nearly 1 in 3 young adults, ages 17 to 24, fail to qualify for military service solely because of their weight, the DoD has increased enforcement of body fat measures for active-duty personnel and eliminated waivers for overweight recruits.

Army Rolls Out Major Upgrade of Electronic Health Record System

By Stephen Spotswood WASHINGTON — This month the Army will begin rolling out a major upgrade to its electronic health record system — the Medical Communications for Combat Casualty Care (MC4) system. The rollout will continue through April 2014 with… Read More

Ethics Abandoned? Task Force Member Says Not Anymore

By Annette M. Boyle NEW YORK — A controversial report about medical ethics violations at Guantanamo Bay and Central Intelligence Agency secret prisons has gotten wide play in the general media, but at least one member of the task force… Read More

Court Strongly Condemns Feres Doctrine in Case Involving Newborn’s Death

By Brenda L. Mooney SAN FRANCISCO — A panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a lower court opinion that a case involving a newborn’s death cannot go forward because of the Feres doctrine but said it… Read More

Warrior Transition Units Go Beyond Physical Recovery for Wounded Soldiers

By Sandra Basu WASHINGTON — For Capt. Edward “Flip” Klein, Oct. 22, 2012, was a life-changing moment. Deployed in Afghanistan, he was struck by a roadside bomb that resulted in the loss of both of his legs above the knee,… Read More

Uniformed Pharmacists Take Half of Next Generation Pharmacist Awards

By Annette M. Boyle LAS VEGAS, NV — Of the 30 finalists in this year’s Next Generation Pharmacist awards, 30% worked in military or public health pharmacies, the strongest representation seen in the awards program. Even more telling, uniformed pharmacists… Read More

VA Backlog Elimination Slowed, Not Stopped by Government Shutdown

By Sandra Basu WASHINGTON — Despite dire warnings by VA officials, last month’s 16-day government shutdown did not halt progress on eliminating VA’s disability claims backlog. In fact,the number of pending claims list declined despite the appropriations cut-off, although the… Read More

Legislators Call on VA to Stop Over-Prescription of Powerful Painkillers

By Sandra Basu WASHINGTON — In the wake of accusations that veterans are over-prescribed powerful painkillers, a House of Representatives subcommittee chairman called on VA to adopt more effective pain management protocols.  “The stakes are too high for VA to… Read More

New ‘Roadmap’ Seeks Better Tools for PTSD, TBI, Suicide Research

By Sandra Basu FORT LAUDERDALE, FL — The newly released National Research Action Plan has created a “common roadmap” for federal agencies to tackle mental health research to include PTSD, TBI and suicide, DoD and VA officials said recently. “It… Read More

Conference Cancellations Push DoD, VA Clinicians to Find Other CME Sources

By Sandra Basu WASHINGTON — With stricter oversight of government conference spending, medical and pharmacy components within DoD and VA are working to ensure providers are still getting their necessary continuing medical education. “In response to government-wide financial constraints on… Read More

Novel Use of Technology Helps Decrease Impact of Wounds of War

By Stephen Spotswood SAN ANTONIO, TX – That soldiers come back from the battlefield bearing permanent reminders of their time there – scars they will live with for the rest of their lives – is taken as a heavy but… Read More

Higher Risk of Brain Lesions For High-Altitude AF Pilots

By Brenda L. Mooney SAN ANTONIO — High-flying U-2 pilots may be paying a neurological price for their service. The elite Air Force pilots flying at high altitudes increase their risks for developing brain lesions, according to a new study,… Read More

Simulation Training Duplicates Experience of Shipboard Trauma Care

SAN DIEGO — When a servicemember experiences physical trauma during deployment, it’s usually during circumstances that are loud, chaotic and happening at a speed too quickly to be followed by the untrained eye. The same is true of treating trauma… Read More

CPAP Shows Promise for Ending Disrupted Sleep/Nightmare Cycle in PTSD

By Brenda L. Mooney JACKSON, MS – For veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), disrupted sleep and nightmares can be a vicious cycle — one feeding the other. Now, new research in the relationship between PTSD and disordered sleep… Read More

Too Little Sleep Raises Women’s Risk of Coronary Events

SAN FRANCISCO – Too little sleep, especially early awakening, plays a significant role in raising unhealthy levels of inflammation among women with coronary heart disease, according to a new study. Interestingly, the elevated inflammation affected only women, not men, even… Read More

Increase in Brain Cells with Histamine Linked to Narcolepsy

MISSION HILLS, CA — An excess of a certain type of brain cell, those containing histamine, may be the cause of the loss of hypocretin cells which has been found in narcolepsy patients, according to a new study. Previous studies… Read More

Some PTSD Sleep Medications Intensify Negative Memories

RIVERSIDE, CA – A new study could have significant implications for servicemembers suffering from insomnia related to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Sleep researchers from University of California campuses in Riverside and San Diego found that a widely prescribed prescription sleep… Read More

Increasing Military Suicide Rates Unrelated to Deployment, Combat

By Brenda L. Mooney Cynthia A. Leardman, MPH SAN DIEGO, CA – Despite common misconceptions, increasing suicides by military servicemembers do not appear to be related to combat experience or deployment – or even multiple deployments, according to a new… Read More