AUSTRALIA a nd t he United States will launch a joint research project on the mental and physical health of veterans of recent conflicts.
Veterans Affairs Minister Warren Snowdon said he wanted to ensure that Australia was providing the best possible support for veterans.
Mr Snowdon, in the US wi t h P r i me Mini s t e r Julia Gill ard f or t he launch of the Vietnam War education centre in Washington, s ai d t he project would compare the outcomes of past US and Australian deployments and research similarities and differences.
‘‘ We have every reason to believe that we are doing what we should be doing,’’ he said from the US.
‘‘ But that doesn’t mean we can’t improve. That is why this joint research project with the US Department of Veterans Affairs is so important.’’
During the US visit, Mr Snowdon will meet US Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki and visit facilities treating injured US personnel.
He wi l l a l s o l a y a wreath at the main US war cemetery at Arlington.
He s a i d more t h a n 40,000 Australians had served over the past decade, almost as many as s e r v e d d u r i n g t h e Vietnam War.