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Armed Forces: Mentally Ill

Volume 491: debated on Monday 20 April 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what his latest estimate is of the incidence of mental illness among serving soldiers in each age group. (269657)

Since July 2007 the Defence Analytical Services and Advice (DASA) organisation has reported on the psychiatric morbidity of the UK armed forces. The annual summary report for 2007 has recently been published, and this includes the breakdown of new attendances in 2007 including both in and out-patient mental health facilities by age group. This information is provided in the table.

New in-patient attendances at external contractor facilities in 2007New out-patient attendances at MOD departments of community mental health in 2007

Age

Total armed forces strength

Number of patients assessed with a mental disorder

Percentage of total strength

Number of patients assessed with a mental disorder

Percentage of total strength

<20

16,000

6

0.04

384

2.39

20-24

45,500

77

0.17

1,102

2.42

25-29

41,700

65

0.16

807

1.94

30-34

29,500

34

0.12

520

1.76

35-39

34,300

38

0.11

554

1.61

40-44

18,100

15

0.08

242

1.34

45-49

9,500

6

0.06

107

1.13

50+

5,300

7

0.13

49

0.92

The figures record all new attendances (i.e. people who have not attended previously) at MOD Departments of Community Mental Health (DCMHs) and in-patient facilities and therefore does not include those whose course of treatment at that facility started prior to January 2007.

Data for 2008 are currently being validated.