Combat PTSD documentary

We are making a serious documentary about combat-related PTSD in the Army, particularly in light of the many veterans who are leaving the Army having served in Iraq.

The film will look at what provisions are out there for ex-soldiers who leave the Army, what's out there for those suffering from PTSD, and why there are such high homeless rates amongst ex-servicemen. Serious film, serious subject.

Most importantly, we're hoping to talk to as many veterans as possible who are suffering from PTSD. If you feel able to talk about this, in confidence, please contact me, Melissa, on 0117 946 6838 or We've got a website at, so you can see we're legit.

Best, MB

Have just spoken to Melissa at length. She emphasises, that they wish to contact EX-servicemen only.

The programme she is making, will look very closely at how ex-servicemen are coping once they return to civilian life, and what provisions there are for them.

The issue of homelessness and imprisoned ex-servicemen and PTSD issues will also be covered as well.

The intention is not to blame MOD , as the programme makers are well aware that their burden of resposibility ends when you walk out of the front gate for the last time.

The programme will concentrate on existing support networks, and what can be done further to look after our veterans.

Interestingly enough, the researchers have looked at networks in other countries, Australia's in particular, stands out , as does the US Veterans administration.

I feel , as long as the programme does not morph into an axe grinding , then it should be supported by our Ex-Forces members.

I'm sure Melissa will return, to give you a better picture of what they are trying to achive.

PTP (you filthy politico)

Why only ex-servicemen (and women)?

There are plenty of serving people who are completely boing-boing.
Indeed Calypso ,

However, an EX-Forces member won't get a hat-on-no-coffee interview for explaining on primetime TV that they are a little over stressed. :wink:
Hmmm... These, I believe, are the people who did the "Dispatches" proggy about Deepcut.
Good, PTP, many thanks for following this up.

A recent post in the long-running "PTSD" sticky made me think about, when I have time, posting some thoughts based on personal knowledge of what is actually available on a non-clinical basis in the world "outside". It's definitely not perfect but there is actually more available than many people realise, even in these days when so many public services seem reduced to call centres and ill-conceived "targets".

As well as on PTSD itself, have some (partly reassuring) thoughts about attitudes amongst trained volunteer caseworkers. Also the horror wrongly acquired by so many during Regular service, of ever being classified as a so-called "SSAFA case".
There's also the issue (which has only really arisen over the last couple of years) of Reservists who, once demobilised, are largely out of the military system whether or not they stay in the TA etc.
crossed_axes said:
There's also the issue (which has only really arisen over the last couple of years) of Reservists who, once demobilised, are largely out of the military system whether or not they stay in the TA etc.
Totally agree crossed_axes, except it hasnt "only really arisen over the past couple of years"!
The demise of this once critical area of Army Medical Services is a travesty.

Investors in people my ..............

This issue needs airing, but I'm not sure if those who did the "deepcut expose" are going to add much value to the debate???
Anything which can highlight PTSD in ex-servicemen/women is good. It will hopefully open peoples eyes to what is happening and may highlight areas where investment is needed.


Get down Victoria or Waterloo rail stations you'll find about 50%+ ex servicemen living in boxes wrapped in newspapers. Ask them a few questions.

Just repeating this from an original post in the PTSD bit of CA

Normal persec rules apply.


I am a researcher for the BBC's current affairs department working on a programme exploring the problems faced by servicemen and women leaving the military. We will be focusing on the issue of homelessness among ex-servicemen, and hope to shed light on the paths which lead to this fate. My own interest in this issue stems from a Newsnight special I worked on in November, which touched upon the same issues in the USA.

This program would aim to focus on what moves are currently being taken to ensure that troops returning from the Middle East over the next few years receive full care before, during and after their placements abroad to prevent PTSD and the social alienation many individuals feel upon return.

If you are interested in speaking to me in confidence over the phone, or can offer any advice on the best way to contact soldiers who are about to (or have recently left) the army and are experiencing problems I would love to hear from you.
You can email me directly at

Many thanks,
This is how the US (DOD) manage post OP welfare (both phyiscal and mental) of US servicemen.

NEWS RELEASE from the United States Department of Defense

No. 076-05
Jan 26, 2005
Media Contact: (703)697-5131
Public/Industry Contact: (703)428-0711

DoD Expands Health Assessment Program Following Deployments

Dr. William Winkenwerder Jr., assistant secretary of defense for health
affairs, announced Monday the implementation of a new clinical program to assess
the health of service members three to six months after redeployment, focusing on
support to those needing assistance with post traumatic stress disorder,
psychological and social readjustment issues.

The program expands the range of care offered to service members
through the pre- and post-deployment health assessments, begun a few years ago and
expanded in 2003. These assessments are screening procedures to gather health
information from deploying and returning service members that aid communication
with a healthcare provider, and assist in evaluating a service member’s health.

“This new initiative is designed to assist service members who have
returned from areas of combat operations to ensure their health and well being,”
Winkenwerder said. “The thrust is to bring them in and ask, ‘How are you doing?’
‘How is your family doing?’ ‘Are you having stress or adjustment issues?’ ‘How can
we help you?’”

Winkenwerder noted the need for such attention and support in the time
period of weeks to months after return. The assessment will consider the overall
health of the returning service member, with emphasis on mental health and
readjustment. Current data show only a small percentage of individuals report
problems immediately following deployment. “In some cases, service members may
have concerns, but, understandably, want to go home,” he said. “Some two to three
months later or more may experience health issues and adjustment problems, but may
be reluctant or not know how to seek help.”

“We have the capacity and the desire to manage these issues
proactively,” he said. “And, it is the right thing for us to do. With this new
disciplined and caring process we intend to remove stigma and reach those needing
support. Importantly, we also will be implementing this program for members of the
Reserves and Guard, and expect that through our partnership with the VA, and our
own Tricare program, we will be able to provide the services.”

Winkenwerder directed implementation of the program by early spring
2005. A working group is preparing policy and protocols for a smooth
implementation. The working group includes representatives from the offices of the
military services’ surgeons general, family services teams, the National Guard
Bureau, Reserve Affairs, the Armed Forces Epidemiological Board and other military
medical organizations.

[Web Version:]
While one can only applaud this initiative if it is indeed as represented, is there any reason at all for any member or ex-member of the Army to put any faith or trust at all in a journalist? Whatever the individual researcher might say or do, the programme will make whichever point it wants - which, based on experience to date, will be shoddy, dishonest, cheap and usually wholly inaccurate.
Maybe Newsnight can give us some more information , or I can give them a bell later?

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