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Armed Forces: Health Services

Defence written question – answered on 11th June 2009.

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Photo of Sir David Amess Sir David Amess Conservative, Southend West

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many armed forces personnel of each (a) rank, (b) regiment and (c) age cohort have been treated for (i) psychological disorders, (ii) post-traumatic stress disorder and (iii) physical injuries in each year since 1997; how many have been discharged as a consequence of (A) a psychological disorder and (B) a physical injury in each such year; which countries each had served in; and how long each had served before discharge.

Photo of Kevan Jones Kevan Jones Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Defence) (Veterans)

Since July 2007 the Defence Analytical Services and Advice (DASA) organisation has reported on the treatment figures for psychological disorders and post-traumatic stress disorders, psychiatric morbidity, of the UK armed forces. Quarterly reports for the whole of 2007 and the first two quarters of 2008 are available both in the Library of the House and on the DASA website at

www.dasa.mod.uk

Equivalent verified data prior to 2007 are not available and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Casualty statistics are published on a fortnightly basis on the MOD website at:

www.mod.uk/DefenceInternet/FactSheets/Operations Factsheets/Operations InAfghanistanBritishCasualties.htm_(Afghanistan)

www.mod.uk/DefenceInternet/FactSheets/Operations Factsheets/OperationsIn IraqBritishCasualties.htm_(Iraq)

Further data broken down by rank, regiment and age cohort are not maintained centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost. To obtain these details would require the examination of the individual medical records of each of the patients who has been classified as very seriously injured (VSI) or seriously injured (SI) for the period of the deployment. These records can only be viewed for non-clinical reasons with the express consent of the individual concerned, to protect patient confidentiality.

The three tables present annual numbers of medical discharges by service between 1997 and 2007, for those discharges where mental and behavioural disorders or musculoskeletal disorders and injuries were the principal cause leading to medical discharge. Figures for 2008 are currently being collated and are not yet available.

Naval Service( 1) medical discharges, by principal cause groups mental and behavioural disorders and musculoskeletal disorders and injuries, number, 1997-2007
ICD cause group
Year of discharge Mental disorders Musculoskeletal disorders and injuries
1997 16 223
1998 31 286
1999 25 321
2000 42 333
2001 30 290
2002 38 276
2003 42 202
2004 29 211
2005 46 223
2006 42 206
2007 40 187
(1) Naval Service includes Royal Navy and Royal Marines
Army medical discharges, by principal cause groups mental and behavioural disorders and musculoskeletal disorders and injuries, number, 1997-2007
ICD cause group
Year of discharge Mental disorders Musculoskeletal disorders and injuries
1997 86 790
1998 94 776
1999 58 804
2000 64 745
2001 104 722
2002 112 734
2003 90 696
2004 121 723
2005 119 676
2006 111 629
2007 114 596
RAF medical discharges, by principal cause groups mental and behavioural disorders and musculoskeletal disorders and injuries, number, 1997-2007
ICD cause group
Year of discharge Mental disorders Musculoskeletal disorders and injuries
1997 19 143
1998 18 91
1999 13 90
2000 21 113
2001 20 71
2002 13 79
2003 28 108
2004 65 71
2005 38 51
2006 78 87
2007 49 109

It is not possible to provide information on the location where the personnel who were medically discharged served as this information is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

The average length of service for Naval Service personnel medically discharged where the principal cause leading to discharge was due to mental and behavioural disorders is 10.3 years. The table provides a breakdown by length of service and year of discharge, 1997-2007.

Length of service for Naval Service( 1) personnel medically discharged with a principal cause of mental and behavioural disorders, by length of service, number( 2) , 1997-2007
Year of discharge
Length of service (years) 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007
All 16 31 25 42 30 38 42 29 46 42 40
Less than 5 (2) (2) (2) 13 12 12 16 11 12 11 7
Greater than or equal to 5 but less than 10 (2) 12 9 9 5 7 8 6 14 12 17
Greater than or equal to 10 but less than 15 (2) 7 6 8 8 9 7 (2) 6 (2) (2)
Greater than or equal to 15 but less than 20 (2) 5 (2) 6 (2) 5 6 5 9 9 6
Greater than or equal to 20 but less than 25 (2) (2) (2) (2) (2) (2) (2) (2) (2) (2) (2)
Greater than or equal to 25 but less than 30 (2) (2) (2) (2) (2) (2)
Greater than or equal to 30 but less than 35 (2) (2) (2) (2) (2)
35 or more
Not known(3) (2)
(1) Naval Service includes Royal Navy and Royal Marines

(2) Small numbers have been suppressed in line with Office for National Statistics Guidelines

(3) Entry date information not available

The average length of service for Naval Service personnel medically discharged where the principal cause leading to discharge was due to musculoskeletal disorders and injuries is 11.5 years. The table provides a breakdown by length of service and year of discharge, 1997-2007.

Length of service for Naval Service( 1) personnel medically discharged with a principal cause of and musculoskeletal disorders and injuries, by length of service, number( 2) , 1997-2007
Year of discharge
Length of service (years) 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007
All 223 286 321 333 290 276 202 211 223 206 187
Less than 5 23 36 62 74 63 50 32 35 45 68 58
Greater than or equal to 5 but less than 10 98 94 88 74 51 50 48 66 72 45 53
Greater than or equal to 10 but less than 15 39 72 66 86 80 100 60 52 44 25 23
Greater than or equal to 15 but less than 20 30 39 46 48 45 41 32 26 43 40 27
Greater than or equal to 20 but less than 25 21 36 52 40 40 26 22 21 14 15 20
Greater than or equal to 25 but less than 30 (2) (2) (2) (2) 6 (2) (2) (2) (2) 9 6
Greater than or equal to 30 but less than 35 (2) (2) (2) (2) (2) 5 (2) (2)
35 or more (2) (2) (2) (2) (2) (2)
Not known(3) (2)
(1) Naval Service includes Royal Navy and Royal Marines

(2) Small numbers have been suppressed in line with Office for National Statistics Guidelines

(3) Entry date information not available

The average length of service for Army personnel medically discharged where the principal cause leading to discharge was due to mental and behavioural disorders is 7.1 years. The table provides a breakdown by length of service and year of discharge, 1997-2007.

Length of service for Army personnel medically discharged with a principal cause of mental and behavioural disorders, by length of service, numbers( 1) , 1997-2007
Year of discharge
Length of service (years) 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007
All 86 94 58 64 104 112 90 121 119 111 114
Less than 5 38 37 30 28 49 48 55 62 56 53 50
Greater than or equal to 5 but less than 10 35 36 5 14 25 26 15 28 23 30 34
Greater than or equal to 10 but less than 15 6 13 11 (1) 14 16 8 16 13 9 16
Greater than or equal to 15 but less than 20 5 (1) (1) 10 5 12 7 (1) 19 10 9
Greater than or equal to 20 but less than 25 (1) (1) (1) (1) 8 (1) 5 (1) (1) (1) (1)
Greater than or equal to 25 but less than 30 (1) (1) (1) (1) (1) (1)
Greater than or equal to 30 but less than 35 (1) (1)
35 or more (1)
(1 )Small numbers have been suppressed in line with Office for National Statistics Guidelines

The average length of service for Army personnel medically discharged where the principal cause leading to discharge was due to musculoskeletal disorders and injuries is 3.4 years. The table provides a breakdown by length of service and year of discharge, 1997-2007.

Length of service for Army personnel medically discharged with a principal cause of and musculoskeletal disorders and injuries, by length of service, number( 1) , 1997-2007
Year of discharge
Length of service (years) 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007
All 790 776 804 745 722 734 696 723 676 629 597
Less than 5 519 562 610 557 520 525 544 545 495 457 455
Greater than or equal to 5 but less than 10 163 116 97 90 74 79 63 81 86 78 64
Greater than or equal to 10 but less than 15 70 62 66 63 66 78 45 34 36 28 27
Greater than or equal to 15 but less than 20 19 27 20 19 29 (1) 27 31 31 38 34
Greater than or equal to 20 but less than 25 (1) (1) 11 (1) 31 (1) 17 27 23 24 15
Greater than or equal to 25 but less than 30 (1) (1) (1) (1) (1) (1) (1)
Greater than or equal to 30 but less than 35 (1) (1) (1) (1) (1) (1)
35 or more (1) (1) (1)
Not known(2)
(1) Small numbers have been suppressed in line with Office for National Statistics Guidelines

(2) Entry date information not available

The average length of service for RAF personnel medically discharged with a principal cause of discharged where the principal cause leading to discharge was due to mental and behavioural disorders is nine years. The table provides a breakdown by length of service and year of discharge, 1997-2007.

Length of service for RAF personnel medically discharged with a principal cause of mental and behavioural disorders, by length of service, number( 1) , 1997-200
Year of discharge
Length of service (years) 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007
All 19 18 13 21 20 13 28 65 38 78 49
Less than 5 (1) (1) (1) 7 (1) (1) 7 39 21 36 21
Greater than or equal to 5 but less than 10 8 8 (1) 5 (1) (1) (1) 12 7 23 12
Greater than or equal to 10 but less than 15 (1) (1) (1) (1) 9 (1) (1) (1) (1) 6 5
Greater than or equal to 15 but less than 20 (1) (1) 5 (1) (1) (1) 7 (1) (1) 5 7
Greater than or equal to 20 but less than 25 (1) (1) (1) (1) 6 10 (1) (1) (1)
Greater than or equal to 25 but less than 30 (1) (1) (1) (1) (1) (1) (1)
Greater than or equal to 30 but less than 35 (1) (1) (1) (1)
35 or more (1)
(1) Small numbers have been suppressed in line with Office for National Statistics Guidelines

The average length of service for RAF personnel medically discharged where the principal cause leading to discharge was due to musculoskeletal disorders and injuries is 11.8 years. The table provides a breakdown by length of service and year of discharge, 1997-2007.

Length of service for RAF personnel medically discharged with a principal cause of and musculoskeletal disorders and injuries, by length of service, number( 1) , 1997-2007
Year of discharge
Length of service (years) 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007
All 143 91 90 113 71 79 108 71 51 87 109
Less than 5 36 17 18 38 18 20 17 27 11 17 15
Greater than or equal to 5 but less than 10 37 30 21 14 7 5 17 15 13 22 29
Greater than or equal to 10 but less than 15 24 12 27 25 11 17 24 5 6 7 12
Greater than or equal to 15 but less than 20 15 7 6 11 15 11 9 6 9 15 17
Greater than or equal to 20 but less than 25 18 14 9 14 12 18 23 5 6 8 21
Greater than or equal to 25 but less than 30 8 5 5 (1) (1) (1) 8 7 (1) 11 (1)
Greater than or equal to 30 but less than 35 (1) (1) (1) (1) (1) (1) (1) (1) (1) (1) (1)
35 or more (1) (1) (1) (1) (1) 7 (1) (1) (1) (1)
Not known(2) (1) (1) (1) (1) (1) (1) (1)
(1) Small numbers have been suppressed in line with Office for National Statistics Guidelines

(2) Entry date information not available

Information detailing the countries served in by each armed forces personnel discharged with a psychological disorder or physical injury is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

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