News

  • Brig. Gen. Sutton Discusses Brain Injuries, Suicide Prevention and Medical Evaluations

    Members of the military who believe they may have had a concussion should always get a prompt medical evaluation – even if they think they don’t need it, according to Brig. Gen. Loree K. Sutton, M.D.

    Sutton is director of the Defense Centers of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury and is the highest ranking psychiatrist in the U.S. Army. She was interviewed for the March 5 episode of “Dot Mil Docs,” a Web radio production of the Military Health System. The interview can be heard at http://www.health.mil/MediaRoom/default.aspx?id=455&currentPg=1

    “Get a brief medical assessment and determine whether you’re really in need of a little rest or whether you can go back,” Sutton said on the program. “It’s certainly possible to be exposed to an explosion and have no visible injury” so it is important “to document what has happened if an individual has felt dazed or confused.”

  • About Traumatic Brain Injuries

    March is Brain Injury Awareness Month and this provides an important opportunity to discuss issues that our warriors and their families face, including the three different categories of traumatic brain injury (TBI): concussion, moderate TBI and severe TBI. Depending upon the degree of TBI, service members can face problems related to attention, memory, behavioral and physical issues, all of which can affect how they function and feel on a daily basis.

  • Have an Idea for DCoE? Submit It!

    A big focus of the Psychological Health Clinical Standards of Care Directorate and Strategies, Plans, and Programs Directorate, has been developing a process for agencies, organizations and individuals outside of DCoE to be able to share a concept or idea related to psychological health or traumatic brain injury with DCoE. As it stood during DCoE’s first year, there was no standardized process for how people let us know about ideas.

  • Center for Deployment Psychology helping hostage negotiation teams

    The Center for Deployment Psychology (CDP) recently worked with the San Antonio Police Department on a training program that holds promise and value for returning veterans and behavioral health situations. Two CDP behavioral health psychiatrists, one at Wilford Hall Medical Center and another at Brooke Army Medical Center, worked together at the request of the San Antonio Police Department to put together a two-day, ten-hour training program.

  • Suicide Prevention Conference

    Team DCoE recently completed an important session in San Antonio, co-hosting with the VA a suicide prevention conference. A first-time joint effort, it enhanced awareness of some of the best practices and methods for suicide prevention. The conference ran Jan 12-15 covering clinical intervention, practical applications and tools, and research and academics.

  • Helping Survivors of Interpersonal Violence

    I recently attended both a training session and a conference that were really interesting and instructive in terms of what I could bring back to DCoE and consider for incorporating and sharing as best practices in the area of interpersonal violence.

    The training that I attended was held by the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape (PCAR), which works at the state and national levels to prevent sexual violence and provides services to victims/survivors of sexual violence and their significant others. The training was given to two-person teams from an area– one person was a community-based sexual assault service provider and the other was a military sexual assault service provider. PCAR believes this military-community team model will be most effective when providing training to community-based providers in their area. The training included information on military policies and military culture that may impact the decisions that military sexual assault survivors make. By understanding culture and policy, service providers can give accurate information to survivors so that they can make decisions that are most helpful to them.

    As PCAR collaborated with the DoD Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office (SAPRO), the information was accurate and informative for those receiving the training. The curriculum was well organized and the instructors were excellent. The participants seemed to enjoy the interactive nature of the training, which included preparing and giving a presentation on a segment of the curriculum. This hands-on approach allowed participants to practice their skills and increase confidence in their instruction abilities before providing the training in their home communities.

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