Janet's Conner

This Blog tell the Truth and will never not tell the Truth. Impeach Bush

Thursday, August 10, 2006

CENTER FOR WAR-RELATED BRAIN INJURIES FACES BUDGET CUTS

Congress appears ready to slash funding for the research and treatment of brain injuries caused by bomb blasts, an injury that military scientists describe as a signature wound of the Iraq war.

USA Today
By: Gregg Zoroya
August 8, 2006

House and Senate versions of the 2007 Defense appropriations bill contain $7M for the Defense and Veteran Brain Injury Center---half of what the center received last fiscal year.

Proponents of increased funding say they are shocked to see cuts in the treatment of bomb blast injuries in the midst of a war.

***That's because the Republican run Congress thinks that our troops aren't important enough to take care of them. They are very willing to send them to war, but that's it! They continue to cut everything they can when it comes to our veterans! You always hear them say, "give our troops what they deserve." But that's only when the cameras are on. But when it comes time to voting for our veterans, forget it. Veterans are one of the first people that they cut! Don't forget. The Republicans don't believe in "entitlements" and are getting rid of as many as they can, including our veterans'.

"I find it basically unpardonable that Congress is not going to provide funds to take care of our soldiers and sailors who put their lives on the line for their country," says Martin Foil, a member of the center's board of directors. "It blows my imagination."

The Brain Injury Center, devoted to treating and understanding war-related brain injuries, has received more money each year of the war---from $6.5M in fiscal 2001 to $14M last eyar. Spokespersons for the appropriations committees in both chambers day cuts were due to a tight budget this year.

***It shouldn't effect our troops! Bottom line! End of debate!

"Honestly, they would have loved to have funded it, but there was just so many priorities," says Jenny Manley, spokeswoman for the Senate Appropriations Committee. "They don't have any flexibility in such a tight fiscal year."

George Zitnay, co-founder of the center, testified before a Seante subcommittee in May that body armor saves troops caught in blasts but leaves many with brain damage. "Traumatic brain injury is the signature of the war on terrorism," he testified.

Zitnay asked for $19M, and 34 Democratic and six Republican members of Congress signed a letter endorsing the budget request.

Look at the numbers up above and tell me who it is that cares about these troops. THE DEMOCRATS!

The House of Representatives approved its version of the spending bill on June 20. A vote in the Senate is pending.

Scientists at the center develop ways to diagnose and treat servicemembers who suffer brain damage. The work is done at seven military and Department of Veterans Affairs hospitals, including the center's headquarters at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, and one civilian treatment site.

The Senate has clashed with the Pentagon in recent months over a program to identify troops who have suffered mild to moderate brain injuries in Iraq from mortars, rocket-propelled grenades and roadside bombs---the most common weapons used by insurgents.

Preliminary research by the center shows that about 10% of all troops in Iraq, and up to 20% of front line infantry troops, suffer concussions during combat tours. Many experience headaches, disturbed sleep, memory loss and behavior issues after coming home, the research shows.

The center urged the Pentagon to screen all troops returning from Iraq in order to treat symptoms and create a database of brain injury victims. Scientists say multiple concussions can cause permanent brain damage.

The Pentagon so far has declined to do the screening and argues that more research is needed.

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