Depression, anxiety and sleep problems can arise during long
deployments of loved ones
MONDAY, May 27 (HealthDay News) — A leading pediatricians’ group
is highlighting the plight of children in military families in a
Tours of duty can last up to 18 months, and studies have shown
that one in four children of active-duty service members has
symptoms of depression. One in three children experiences
excessive worry, and half of children have trouble sleeping,
according to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) report.
RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest
National Network) is the nation’s largest anti-sexual
violence organization and was named one of “America’s 100 Best
Charities” by Worth magazine. RAINN created and operates the
National Sexual Assault Hotline (800.656.HOPE
(4673) and online.rainn.org) in partnership with
more than 1,100 local rape
crisis centers across the country and operates the DoD Safe Helpline for the
Department of Defense. RAINN also carries out programs to prevent
sexual violence, help victims and ensure that rapists are brought
You can reach your local crisis center at any time by calling
National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1.800.656.HOPE
All RAINN Affiliates operate 24/7 crisis telephone hotlines that
serve victims of sexual violence.
A national review of the Army’s behavioral health workforce
outlines delays in care, inaccurate diagnoses and a need for more
SEATTLE — Problems with combat stress in soldiers have escalated
so rapidly that the Army has doubled its behavioral health
workforce over the last five years and still needs to hire more
help, according to a nationwide review of the military’s troubled
system for handling the mental wounds of war.
The review, released Friday [March 15, 2013], said about 4% of
those returning from combat come home with behavioral health
problems. In seeking help, they face a confusing array of
programs, inconsistencies in training for mental health workers and gaps in mental
health records because of uncoordinated record-keeping systems.
The mission of CalVet is to deliver the innovative services
veterans and their families need to be successful, productive
Californians in the most efficient and cost effective manner
through aggressively collaborating with key stakeholders and
The Fisher House
program is a unique private-public partnership that supports
America’s military in their time of need. The program recognizes
the special sacrifices of our men and women in uniform and the
hardships of military service by meeting a humanitarian need
beyond that is normally provided by the Departments of Defense
and Veterans Affairs.
A new not-for-profit organization, HonorVet, is gearing up to be the
next- generation interactive community for veterans, service
members and their families. HonorVet.org is expected
to allow users to access mental health professionals at any time
of day through online video conferencing, instant messaging chat
rooms or phone. Users will be able to speak to
someone immediately or schedule an appointment.
MyVetwork is an online social networking community for
all U.S. Military active duty or retired veterans, their spouses,
families and friends.It is a free network that provides U.S.
military (and their families) with support, meaningful
connections and advice regarding healthcare and other resources.
The Real Warriors’ Campaign helps promote recovery, build
resilience and support the reintegration of service members and
their families. They offer an Outreach Center, a 24/7 call center
staffed by health resource consultants and more.
Warrior Project™ (WWP) offers a variety of free programs to
meet a range of needs. WWP’s purpose is to help injured service
members aid and assist each other; and to provide unique,
direct programs and services to meet the needs of injured service
members. To participate you must have incurred service-connected
wounds, injuries, or illnesses on or after September 11, 2001.
Verification of service is required.
About six years ago, I was preparing to retire. Starting to cut
back on my clinical psychiatry practice, I was looking forward to
spending more time with my grandchildren and traveling with my
But then Donald and I happened to walk along the beach in Santa
Monica, just as a veterans’ group was putting up hundreds of
little white crosses in the sand, commemorating deaths of U.S.
soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan. I gasped, stunned by the
enormity of the losses. And then I started thinking about all the
soldiers who have been returning home alive, and maybe physically
well, but traumatized by all they have seen and endured.
As a therapist, I knew I had the tools to help, and also that I
couldn’t ignore the need.
So rather than retire, I soon embarked on a new career, as the
founder of a new nonprofit organization called The Soldiers
Project, which provides free mental health care for
veterans and their families.
WASHINGTON, Sept. 25 (UPI) — Almost $10 million was allocated to
boost the number of mental health providers to help military
personnel, veterans and families, a U.S. official says.
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced
Tuesday [September 25, 2012] a new program — as part of the
Affordable Care Act — that will boost the number of social
workers and psychologists who work in rural areas and with
military personnel, veterans and their families.
Today [August 31, 2012] President Obama signed an executive order
to improve mental-health care for service members and veterans,
who are killing themselves at alarming and baffling rates. The
order affects the Departments of Veterans Affairs, Defense,
Health and Human Services, Education and Homeland Security. It
calls for things like more hiring of mental-health
professionals, a national suicide-prevention campaign, and a
review of existing mental-health and addiction-treatment programs
to identify and expand the programs that work well.
Improvements in imaging technologies have allowed doctors to peer
into the brain to begin to get a picture of the causes behind
such disorders as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.
Psychiatrists like Thomas Neylan, director of the PTSD program at
the San Francisco Veterans Affairs Medical Center and a professor
of psychiatry at UCSF, hope it’s just a matter of time before
such technologies also provide a glimpse into the biological
underpinnings behind such conditions as sleep disorders and
post-traumatic stress disorder. Sleep disturbances, PTSD and
other behavioral problems are common among veterans and have a
direct impact on the health of the body and, specifically, the
It was a bill that had no organized opposition, and passed
through every committee without a single “nay” vote.
The governor added his approval Tuesday to that overwhelming
support, signing AB 1869 by Assembly Speaker John Pérez (D-Los
Angeles) into law.
The legislation affects approximately 130,000 veterans who remain
uninsured despite possibly being eligible for federal Veterans
Affairs health benefits, according to a Senate analysis of
California Health Interview Survey data compiled by UCLA.
It’s possible that some of the 174,000 veterans who receive
Medi-Cal benefits in California might be eligible for federal
veterans’ benefits. Usaing veterans eligibility could save the
state money, since Medi-Cal is supposed to be the payer of last
resort, the Senate analysis said.
The annual relief effort focuses on providing medical care
and counseling, but experts say dental and eyecare problems are
‘hidden’ issues for many veterans.
SAN DIEGO — Two dentists and two Navy dental corpsmen are working
on the mouth of John Gardinier, an Army veteran who served in
Vietnam and now lives in Tijuana near the clinic where he can get
methadone for his drug addiction.
“It’s no good to have teeth that are rotten,” Gardinier, 64, had
said as he waited to be treated at the dental services area at
the 25th annual Stand Down in San Diego for homeless and hard-luck
military veterans. The relief effort brings together dozens of
government agencies, nonprofits and volunteers to provide
veterans with a variety of health and social
SAN DIEGO — As part of President Obama’s 2013 budget, the
Department of Defense proposed raising annual enrollment fees and
prescription drug cost-sharing for TRICARE, the health care
program for active military members, retirees their families and
The proposed additional fees amount to a $13 billion shift from
the Pentagon to TRICARE beneficiaries over a period of five
TRICARE serves 9.6 million eligible active and retired military
personnel and their families. Approximately 650,000 of those
beneficiaries are based in California. More than 300,000 live in
the San Diego region.
Mission Bay will soon be welcoming a new tenant to its life
science hub: the San Francisco Veterans Affairs Medical Center.
The VA center is opening a 42,000-square-foot research center in
Mission Bay once construction is complete in the late summer or
early fall. Approximately 130 staff members will be relocated
there from its campus on Clement Street in the Richmond District.