First responders across the nation witness horrific scenes every day. Eventually, those experiences take their toll — causing many to suffer from PTSD.


Still, 17 states do not provide workers' compensation for mental injuries.


Here are the stories of three people affected by PTSD and the lack of resources available to help. 



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It's up to each state to decide. 
The status of mental health coverage for mental injuries with a non-physical case varies widely across states. Additionally, some states are currently in the process of expanding coverage for first responders. Click below to see an interactive map that shows the status of mental health-related workers' compensation laws across all 50 states.

"Exposure to traumatic experiences has always been a part of the human condition... The PTSD diagnosis has filled an important gap in psychiatry in that its cause was the result of an event the individual suffered, rather than a personal weakness."

-Matthew J. Friedman, MD, PhD