This is the KCCI news story on Richard Miles - the PTSD veteran that froze to death in Waterworks Park in Des Moines. The feature discusses my advocacy for legislation to provide long term residential psychiatric services for PTSD, TBI and MST vets at the Iowa Veterans Home. It is true that The VA is short handed on this issue - thanks in part to Congress's failure to ramp up funding during the height of the war when Charles Grassley was Senate Finance Chair. However, Iowa has a specific legal responsibility to provide for long term residential psychiatric care for veterans and has failed to do so. In fact, Branstad killed $100 million of construction for this kind of housing at the Iowa Veterans Home immediately after taking office -- because he did not want to use union labor. Sickening!!
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Richard Miles, the PTSD vet that froze to death in Waterworks Park. The story delves more into the human side of Rickard Miles. He wanted treatment and he wanted to be hospitalized for long
term psychiatric residential care - and HE WAS REFUSED AND GIVEN MEDS. The VA has only 10 psych beds available, and those are short care beds for vets that have a severe
Sadly in the face of 500,000 post-9/11 vets with PTSD in AMERICA, the 60 beds at Knoxville were closed under actions set in motion by Bush, and the 20 long term beds at the Iowa Veterans Home in Marshalltown were closed under actions set in motion by Branstad. This was a gross breaches of faith with the veteran community.
Richard Miles was given psychiatric residential care by his family at home because there was no state beds. It would be like getting open heart surgery at home with your mom wielding the scalpel. Though no fault of the family that had no option, this is simply wrong, and had fatal consequence. I call it a case of negligent homicide by the state of Iowa.
This is my editorial on the problem with the shortage (a.k.a. elimination) of long term psychiatric care beds at the Iowa Veterans Home. I sent this to the media just before the Richard Miles story broke. PLEASE contact your local legislator and ask for funding to reboot the long term psychiatric residential care program at the Iowa Veterans Home. It is too late for Richard Miles, but there are thousands of others right behind him.
Bob Krause for Iowa's Future
2127 High St
Des Moines, IA
Campaign Office Phone: +1 515 6570069
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