Health & Safety

March 10, 2014

Aiming to reduce stigma of TBI

Gustavo Bahena
Public Affairs Office NTC and Fort Irwin

National Brain Injury Awareness Month a time to get informed, get treatment

In order for more individuals to seek treatment for traumatic brain injuries, the social stigma associated with that “invisible wound” must be reduced.

That is the message Maj. Shirley Daniel, chief and program manager of the TBI/Concussive Injury Clinic at Weed Army Community Hospital on Fort Irwin, wants to impart to Sol- diers, Families and civilians of this military installation. With March being National Brain Injury Awareness Month, it is an opportunity for the nation and the Army to inform communi- ties about TBI’s and the need for treatment and prevention.

Traumatic brain injuries have become one of the signature invisible wounds of war resulting from combat operations in Afghanistan and Iraq, according to Daniel. And while most individuals fully recover from a TBI, many others live with short and long term physical, behavioral, psychological and cognitive changes.

“It is important for leaders and Soldiers to understand and identify signs and symptoms early after an injury has occurred,” Daniel said.

Leaders care about their Soldiers’ well-being, Daniel said.

However, sometimes even leaders have a hard time acknowl- edging they may be experiencing symptoms from a TBI and haven’t sought treatment. Often, the stigma of being associated with an injury that produces behavioral or cognitive challenges reduces the likelihood a servicemember will seek treatment. But, it doesn’t have to be that way.

An example of a leader who pushed to de-stigmatize medical problems is retired Gen. Peter Chiarelli. During Chiarelli’s
tenure as Army vice chief of staff, he advocated for changing the term “post traumatic stress disorder” to “post traumatic stress” in order to reduce the historical stigma linked with PTSD.

“I think we have begun the process in the Army of de-stigmatizing behavior health issues. That to me is absolutely critical,” Chiarelli said in 2012, when he was leading the effort to reduce suicides in the Army.

Chiarelli continues to support servicemembers through the Ronald A. Katz Center for Collaborative Military Medicine at the University of California at Los Angeles. Chiarelli and a team from UCLA will attend a National Training Center senior leaders’ summit on TBI and PTSD to be held by United States Army Medical Department Activity, here, March 31.

The summit, organized by Daniel, seeks to increase leader awareness of the invisible wounds of TBI’s with co-occurring physiological health issues and will include the signing of a memorandum of agreement between MEDDAC and UCLA.

It will also highlight effective and innovative treatment options through technology. The Summit will be one of the largest of its kind and may become the model for the rest of the Army.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Legal counsel helps Soldiers with Integrated Disability Evaluation System

Soldiers undergoing a medical evaluation board sometimes feel lost and confused with the significant decisions they have to make that will affect their military careers and the rest of their lives. The Office of Soldiers’ Counsel is the Army’s team of qualified and trained attorneys and paralegals who assist Soldiers in the Integrated Disability Evaluation...
 
 
JAG_seal

The power to contract – use it wisely

The basic memorialization or record of any business transaction is a contract. More often than not, this contract is the only evidence of any relationship between the parties to the transaction. Whether you are purchasing somet...
 
 
Convoy_brief

NTC trainers prepare units for success on battle fields of today, tomorrow

Staff Sgt. Marcus McCormick, of the 289th Quartermaster Company, provides a convoy its mission brief Aug. 20 during a morning supply mission.   The training that rotational units receive here can be brutal – challenging ...
 

 
Gustavo Bahena

Department of Defense official views training area

Gustavo Bahena National Training Center and Fort Irwin Commander Maj. Gen. Ted Martin motions while speaking with Jamie Morin, director of Cost Assessment and Program Evaluation for the Department of Defense. The director of Co...
 
 
Photo by Capt. Jessica Cook

Women combat isolation with mentorship

Photo by Capt. Jessica Cook Sgt. Meriem Ettioutioui (right), 51st Translator and Interpreter Company, talks with Spc. Farida Alvi and Spc. Maryam Mahfeli, also with 51st TICO, about her deployment experience in 2013. The tough ...
 
 
Gustavo Bahena

IMCOM command sergeant major visits Fort Irwin

Gustavo Bahena Fort Irwin USAG Commander Col. Jon Braga points to an illustration of the installation’s future new hospital while speaking with Command Sgt. Maj. Jeffrey Hartless, of United States Army Installation Management...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin