Many police suffer from PTSD

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More police suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder than was previously expected.  The National police report that between 1500 and 2500 co-workers are guessed to suffer from PTSS, because they are referred for treatment, according to the National Police Deputy Chief Constable Gerard Bouman,who told the tv programme Zembla on Thursday. PTSD is an occupational stress syndrome that has been validated as such at the police corps for two years. Around 4000 officers are already registered as patients, of a total of 60,000 officers, the AD reports. But Bouman thinks that more officers may have the disorder. "There are really too many. I am convinced that there are also cases that, because there was little attention for it, were a dark number and weren't counted."

PTSD is an anxiety disorder that people can develop after trauma. Patients often don't sleep well, react nervously and experience random flashbacks of traumatic events. In the report Blauwdruk Mentale Zorglijn Politie (Blueprint Mental Care line Police) which was set up last year by request of minister Ivo Opstelten (Security and Justice), it was advised to install an executive psychologist at the head of the police. In the VARA programme, Bouman admits that this has yet to happen because the National Police will have to spend a lot of time on the reorganization.

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