Caring for Active Duty Military Personnel in the Civilian Sector
AbstractDue to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the unmet medical and psychological needs of military personnel are creating major challenges. Increasingly, active duty military personnel are seeking physical and mental health services from civilian professionals. The Civilian Medical Resources Network attempts to address these unmet needs. Participants in the Network include primary care and mental health practitioners in all regions of the country. Network professionals provide independent assessments, clinical interventions in acute situations, and documentation that assists GIs in obtaining reassignment or discharge. Most clients who use Network services come from low-income backgrounds and manifest psychological rather than physical disorders. Qualitative themes in professional-client encounters have focused on ethical conflicts, the impact of violence without meaning (especially violence against civilians), and perceived problems in military health and mental health policies. Unmet needs of active duty military personnel deserve more concerted attention from medical professionals and policy makers.
Case Studies in Health Activism