"With the additional data available, Army officials can now consider applicants as a whole person, allowing a series of Army leaders and medical professionals to review the case fully to assess the applicant's physical limitations or medical conditions and their possible impact upon the applicant's ability to complete training and finish an Army career".
"Recent reports that the Army has changed medical entrance standards for those with mental health issues are inaccurate", Seamands said in the statement.
Though waivers for recruits with a history of mental health issues were banned in 2009, the news outlet reported that the latest unannounced policy change had been enacted in August as officials began to face the challenge of recruiting 80,000 new service members by September 2018.
U.S. Army recruits practice patrol tactics while marching during U.S. Army basic training at Fort Jackson, S.C., December 6, 2006.
The Army is also offering more bonuses to recruits, paying $424 million in bonuses, up from $284 million in 2016.
The burden of proof for the waivers will be "on the applicant", according to memos obtained by USA Today.
"Perhaps the reason recruiters are struggling more than they did during strong-economy years in the past is because young people are not attracted to an organization that seems more interested in political correctness than in its primary mission - defending the country".
Dr. Amy Edwards, a Psychiatrist at North End Psychiatry & Associates, says anything that reduces the stigma surrounding mental health issues and seeking treatment is a good thing.
Mental health in the military has always been a point of contention, particularly for the Army, which for years have experienced more mental illness diagnoses than any other branch, according to Pentagon reports.
U.S. Army National Guard photo by Pfc.
The real issue for me is the ability of the USA armed forces to offer those with mental-health issues real support-medical and otherwise-especially in light of what soldiers face, either those with diagnoses before they enter the armed forces or those who develop mental-health conditions after.
Kelley followed eight other US veterans to carry out shooting sprees since 2009, each case tied to inadequately-addressed mental health issues.
The Pentagon mandates that each service accept no more than 4 percent from Category Four.