Kick of the Day

I always get a kick out of seeing an operations research/operations management professor’s or researcher’s name in the mainstream media or seeing an application highlighted in the press.  It seems like this is happening more and more often.  I still remember the day a couple of years ago when I came home, turned on the TV for NBC News and stared at the screen: “Is that Cindy Barnhart I am seeing?”  (Yes, it was…)

I always envied the field of Economics a bit since they get a lot of face time with the media (although I am not sure if they are liked so much during times of economic crises).  As our methods mature and as we use them more for public policy decisions or other important applications, our field is getting more attention.

The New York Times printed an op-ed article by Stanford Prof. Lawrance Wein yesterday. Take a look: Counting the Walking Wounded.

…post-traumatic stress disorder is a common problem among returning soldiers. But how many, exactly, are affected?

This question is key to determining how large an investment the Department of Veterans Affairs needs to make in diagnosing and treating the problem. …

To get a better estimate of the rate of P.T.S.D. among Iraq war veterans, two graduate students, Michael Atkinson and Adam Guetz, and I constructed a mathematical model in which soldiers incur a random amount of stress during each month of deployment (based on monthly American casualty data), develop P.T.S.D. if their cumulative stress exceeds a certain threshold, and also develop symptoms of the disorder after an additional amount of time. We found that about 35 percent of soldiers and marines who deploy to Iraq will ultimately suffer from P.T.S.D. – about 300,000 people, with 20,000 new sufferers for each year the war lasts.

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One Response to Kick of the Day

  1. […] in the New York Times on post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), so thanks to Güzin Bayraksan for pointing it out in her blog.  Entitled “Counting the Walking Wounded”, the piece argues that the number of […]

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