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Daniel Zwerdling

Aftershock: The Blast That Shook Psycho Platoon

Five soldiers injured in the same 2009 bomb blast are a case study in a new epidemic among America's troops, who are grappling with a combination of concussion and post-traumatic stress disorder.

Gov't Watchdog Criticizes Pentagon Center for PTSD, Brain Injuries

The Pentagon’s Defense Centers of Excellence are plagued by management weakness and obscure finances, according to recent Government Accountability Office reports.

New Survey: Few Troops Exposed to Bomb Blasts Are Screened For Concussion

Only about 1 in 5 soldiers and Marines say they have been tested to determine if they have suffered brain injuries. Military officials hope the numbers will improve now that a new policy is in place.

Critical Shortage of Army Neurologists for U.S. Troops in Iraq and Afghanistan

A military memorandum says that new requirements for diagnosing and treating brain injury has resulted in a shortage of Army neurologists on battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan.

Army Plans New Guidelines to Resolve Denials of Purple Hearts to Brain-Injured Soldiers

The Army’s move comes in response to an investigation published last September by ProPublica and NPR that revealed some soldiers had been wrongly denied the medal despite regulations that made them eligible for it.

Scientific Review Kicks Off to Weigh Treatment for Brain-Injured Soldiers

The National Institutes of Medicine convened the first of what's expected to be a series of public panels to help determine whether cognitive rehabilitation therapy could help heal troops who suffered traumatic brain injuries in Afghanistan and Iraq.

More Than 70 Members of Congress Demand Cognitive Treatment for Troops With Traumatic Brain Injuries

Citing an investigation by ProPublica and NPR, 74 members of Congress have signed a letter demanding that Tricare, the Pentagon’s health plan, provide treatment for troops with traumatic brain injuries.

Congress to Investigate Pentagon Decision to Deny Coverage for Brain Injured Troops

Sen. Claire McCaskill's committee wants to examine a contract between Tricare, the Pentagon's health plan, and ECRI Institute, which found insufficient evidence to support cognitive rehabilitation therapy.

American Legion Pushes For Coverage of Treatment for Troops With Brain Injuries

Citing an investigation by ProPublica and NPR, the nation’s largest veterans group is demanding that Tricare, the Pentagon’s health plan, pay for cognitive rehabilitation therapy

Pentagon Told Congress It's Studying Brain-Damage Therapy

The Pentagon told Congress last month that it was studying the efficacy of cognitive rehabilitation therapy for brain-injured soldiers, the same treatment the Pentagon's health plan refuses to cover.

For Brain-Injured Soldiers, Top Quality Care From a Philanthropist, not the Pentagon

At Project Share, started by philanthropist Bernie Marcus, brain-injured troops get cognitive therapy rehabilitation to relearn basic tasks of life -- care the Pentagon's Tricare health plan won't pay for.

How Our FOIA Request Was Blocked, and Why We're Still Pursuing It

A FOIA request for documents on a Tricare-commissioned study that concluded cognitive rehabilitation therapy was not effective was met with contradictory denials and explanations from Tricare and the company that did the study.

Pentagon Health Plan Won't Cover Brain-Damage Therapy for Troops

The Pentagon’s health care program run by Tricare denies coverage of cognitive rehabilitation to troops with traumatic brain injuries, claiming the treatment does not meet their standards, despite medical groups’ consensus that it improves the quality of life and despite criticism of the study Tricare did to justify its position.

Congresswoman Calls for Review of Purple Heart Decisions

Rep. Chellie Pingree, a House Armed Services Committee member, says soldiers with concussions should be recognized if they meet the Army’s criteria.

Pentagon Spokesman Wrong on Purple Heart

An error, though soon corrected, shows confusion about medals for soldiers with brain trauma.

Soldiers With Brain Trauma Denied Purple Hearts, Adding Insult to Injury

Soldiers with mild traumatic brain injuries have been denied Purple Hearts, even though the injury is specifically mentioned as eligible for one.

Rep. Teague Pledges Deeper Inquiry Into Treatment for Brain-Injured Soldiers

Rep. Harry Teague promises to dramatically expand an inquiry into the treatment of soldiers who have suffered mild traumatic brain injuries. The New Mexico Democrat opened his investigation after our reports that the military seemed to be ignoring many of those injuries.

Fort Bliss Says It Will Examine Its Handling of Brain Injuries

After soldiers' reports of problems, officials at Fort Bliss tell a congressman that they will review the base's care for traumatic brain injuries. But the base is now providing information that seems to contradict earlier statements.

Pentagon Shifts Its Story About Departure of Leader of Brain Injury Center

The Pentagon now says that a general who led the military’s effort to handle brain injuries was asked to step down. A spokeswoman for the general had earlier said that the reassignment was routine.

Pentagon Issues New Policy for Diagnosing and Treating Brain Injuries

The new rules address weaknesses in the handling of mild traumatic brain injuries, requiring rest periods and enhanced tracking for soldiers exposed to blasts.

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