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02 December 2010

'Don't ask, don't tell' put soldiers at risk

Gay service members with STDs often avoid military doctors or go undiagnosed.

A physician with experience caring for armed forces personnel says the US military's "don't ask, don't tell" policy puts both service members and the general public at risk by encouraging secrecy about sexual health issues.

The military is currently pondering the end of the "don't ask, don't tell" policy, which does not allow gay service members to serve openly. No one knows how many gays are in the armed forces. However, one 2002 study found that active-duty Navy sailors made up 9% of the patients who visited one gay men's health clinic in San Diego.

 
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