I spoke this morning at an event outside Boston hosted by NAMI NH, the New Hampshire organization of the National Alliance for Mental Illness. The subject was “Best Practices in Mental Health, Prevention and Wellness for Military and their Families,” and to be blunt, a major issue is suicide prevention among veterans.
This video cites that in 2009, more veterans killed themselves than all the active duty soldiers who died in Iraq and Afghanistan combined – and many vets with war-related mental problems aren’t getting any services. Whatever your political views may be about the military actions themselves, this is a human tragedy.
I spoke about the patient engagement movement, starting with citing my own father’s service in World War II and my father-in-law’s – he returned not well, and though we can’t diagnose the dead, his lifelong explosive anger sounds like today it might be called PTSD. (I emphasize that we can’t know.)
Below are my slides. I sure wish my voice recorder wasn’t out of batteries – a lot was said that’s not in the slides. At bottom are the URLs for the resources I talked about.