William S. Middleton Memorial Veterans Hospital
The Clinical Aspect - PTSD
The September 11th terrorist attacks of 2001 and the Global War on Terrorism (GWOT) has increased Americans' awareness of the ways traumatic events can impact lives. The Department of Veteran Affairs has been aware of these effects for many years and has been caring for the veterans who are experiencing problems related to trauma. Specialized programs have been formed across the country at VA Hospitals and Vet Centers to help veterans who are experiencing these problems. The National Center for PTSD has recently updated their website to provide information to veterans, their families, and clinicians about PTSD and its treatment.
The PTSD Clinical Team (PCT) is based in Madison, Wisconsin, at the Veterans Administration Hospital, with part of the clinical team stationed at the Rockford, Illinois Outpatient Clinic. Team members can also meet with veterans who live at some distance from these locations via videoconferencing technology. Team members can provide an initial evaluation for veterans who are having difficulties they think may be related to their experiences with traumatic or extremely stressful events. Typically, the team works with veterans who have experienced combat-related trauma (such as mortar fire of an IED attack), sexual trauma in the military (for example, rape or sexual harassment), or other trauma related to their military experience (e.g., emergency medical situations, or non-combat disasters like fires or explosions which occurred at a duty station).
Group or individual counseling may be recommended and a meeting may be scheduled with a psychiatrist to determine whether medications may be of help.
Description of the Team
The PCT clinical team has special expertise in the treatment of trauma in veterans. Professionals from several disciplines (Psychiatry, Psychology, Social Work, and Addictive Disorders Treatment) work in concert to help veterans better understand their difficulties and to suggest approaches to better manage these problems. The team is based at the Madison VA Medical Center and the Rockford Outpatient Clinic and video-conferencing linkages are available at some VA Outpatient Clinics.