Service Personnel Injuries

Defence written question – answered on 2nd February 2007.

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Photo of Mark Harper Mark Harper Shadow Minister (Defence)

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many personnel injured in (a) Iraq and (b) Afghanistan have (i) lost both legs and both arms, (ii) lost both legs at or above the knee, (iii) lost both legs below the knee, (iv) lost one leg at or above the knee, (v) lost one leg below the knee, (vi) lost both arms at or above the elbow, (vii) lost both arms below the elbow, (viii) lost one arm at or above the elbow, (ix) lost one arm below the elbow, (x) received deep second degree or third degree burns to more than 70 per cent. of the body, (xi) been blinded in both eyes and (xii) been made deaf.

Photo of Adam Ingram Adam Ingram Minister of State (Armed Forces), Ministry of Defence

holding answer 22 January 2007

Information on casualties sustained in Iraq and Afghanistan is recorded in terms of clinical severity, so as to aid medical staff in providing the appropriate levels of care at each stage of treatment and in planning for future operations. Casualties are recorded as Very Seriously Injured (VSI), Seriously Injured (SI) or Un-Listed (UL).

Information on the number of military personnel who have lost limbs due to combat, have received serious burns, or had sensory deprivation is not recorded. To find this number would require the examination of the individual medical records of each patient who has been classified as VSI or SI in Iraq and Afghanistan. These records can only be viewed for non-clinical reasons with the express consent of the individual concerned, to protect patient confidentiality.

The Ministry of Defence publishes data on battle and non-battle casualties that have resulted from our operations in Iraq from March 2003 and Afghanistan since January 2006. The best centrally available casualty statistics can be found on the Ministry of Defence website at:

http://www.mod.uk/DefenceInternet/FactSheets/Operations Factsheets

Between March 2003 and 31 December 2005, 40 UK military and civilian personnel were categorised by the Notification of Casualty (NOTICAS) system as VSI from all causes and 70 personnel have been categorised as SI from all causes in Iraq. These figures will include those who lost limbs due to combat, but also include other VSIs and Sis sustained as a result of combat and non-combat injuries.

Between 1 January 2006 and 31 December 2006, 11 UK personnel were categorised as VSI and 19 as SI from all causes excluding disease. As aforementioned, these figures will include those who lost limbs due to combat, but also include other VSI and SIs from combat and non-combat causes.

Between 1 January 2006 and 31 December 2006, 17 UK personnel were categorised as VSI and 13 as SI from all causes excluding disease. As aforementioned, these figures will include those who lost limbs due to combat, but also include other VSI and SIs from combat and non-combat causes.

Those classified as VSI have sustained illness or injury of such severity that life or reason is imminently endangered. SI covers those who's condition is of such severity that there is cause for immediate concern, but there is no imminent danger to life or reason.

It is likely that those who received deep second or third degree burns to 70 per cent. of the body would be included in either the VSI or SI figures, but this would depend on the severity of their injury. It is not possible to say whether all those blinded in both eyes or made deaf would be included.

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Annotations

Bill Burrows
Posted on 5 Feb 2007 1:50 pm (Report this annotation)

Ingram is typical of this government of spin and deceit. VSI's, SWi's in action, not in action, WHY NOT JUST TELL THE TRUTH. Remember when the War Criminals were questioned after WWII. The guilty ones then said, I only kept the records, I only locked the doors. Ingram beats them hands down, he keeps records and hides them. He belongs in the dock at The Hague with Blair and the others who voted for the illegal war.