iPhone App for Veterans with PTSD

smart phones

by Levi Newman on April 20, 2011

Together, the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Defense have created an iPhone app which may provide on the spot help for veterans who suffer from PTSD.  This new app, called the PTSD Coach can link veterans to local support and even help in the moment of need.

The application is free from the iTunes store.  The VA and DoD are also encouraging family and friends of veterans to download the app, as it provides information about PTSD, helping family and friends better understand the struggle that their veteran love one is going through.

Dr. Robert Petzel, the VA’s undersecretary for health encourages veterans to take advantage of the services they have earned, saying “veterans should utilize all of the benefits they have earned…one of the best things about this app is it will get veterans connected to the places that are out there to provide help.”  He also encouraged veterans to continue to seek professional mental health, using the app and an additional tool, but not as a replacement for counseling.

The same app, built for the Android phone platform is expected to be released in about mid June this year.

Photo thanks to Roberrific under creative common license on Flickr.

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

sarge April 21, 2011 at 10:21 am

I received my disability rating for PTSD in 1983 and am kind of old school. In fact just learned how to use a PC to post meaningless BS like this. Help me out here, what the hell good is a APP going to do for me and other vets who have PTSD who do not have a damn cell phone?

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Wounded Warrior April 27, 2011 at 4:27 pm

Try the Wounded Warriors Family Support. There mission is to provide support to the families of those who have been wounded, injured or killed during combat operations. The families of our casualties suffer in many ways: some financially, some psychologically.

Wounded Warriors Family Support mitigates their trauma by allowing them to find peace and solace as a family once more in family-friendly resorts that we provide free of charge. The resort condominium that we own in Orlando, Florida are quiet havens where war torn families can reunite and become stronger.

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Littlelunatuna April 26, 2011 at 8:09 pm

I hear you Sarge…but at least you had the courage to apply for PTSD benefits and recieved a disability rating. Congratulations! You are an inspiration. That is really an important step. I know of veterans, myself included, who have been diagnosed with PTSD and have not applied for service connected benefits. I am in the process of doing that now. Like you I do not own, nor can I afford an iPhone. I guess you could say I am old school (received my direct commission in 1977 LOL) but I try and stay on top of what is out there so I can communicate and stay in touch. I would LOVE to have an iPhone. I would LOVE for all the members of my family to have an iPhone. My two grown children both have iPhones and I have sent them this link. I have posted it to my Facebook page to share with other friends and family. I have an appointment with my VA counselor this week and I am taking the information to share with the Mental Health Clinc just in case they do not know about it. I think of this APP like CPR for the mind. It makes me feel better knowing that even though I do not have an iPhone my friends and family who do might download the PTSD Coach APP and be there for me and other veterans in times of crisis if we need them to be.

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Finally Help December 8, 2011 at 12:50 pm

I have suffered from ptsd for over 21 years and have never known it. I was near combat operations flying on C130 aircraft during the persian gulf war and suffured sexual battery, mission trauma, head trauma, and what appears now to be gulf war syndrom related leisions and ailements. I strongly believe there was a cover up of my actual medical records from the theater as a result of my battery. I was treated in a makeshift field hospital. My tour was cut short as a result of my head wound, and I was put on plane home 3 months short of my orders. My assult was from another man, one of my superiors. My loving wife and children have lived through hell over the years dealing with an agitated, violent, distant, and often suicidal husband/dad. I fear daily for my life and moved my familly 21 times in 21 years as a result of my paranoia. I always thought my perpertrater would find me. I never talked to anyone about my service in fear of their threats that I would be dishonorable discharged and have my GI Bill revoked if I ever spoke about my incedents. After a recent and almost fatal hospital stay for related problems, my brother got me in touch with my local veteran affairs office. I had no idea what was wrong with me. No one could figure it out. Parkinsons, multiple sclorisis, stroke, tumor? They couldn’t find anything that matched my symtoms in civilian care facilities. There is no history of mental illness in my family and they just wrote it off as mental illness.I had wanted nothing to do with the military or the government and I had stayed far away since my honorable discharge. I burried myself in alcohol for 21 years trying to dull my pain. Out of despiration and at the urging of my VA rep and family (who my brother and wife forced me to meet with), I agreed to enroll in VA benefits and have myself evaluated by them. I’ve been in counceling and on medications for the past 6 months and have had some improvements. I was quickly diagnosed with PTSD and disaosociative disorder which my therapist believes saved my life. I’m also evaluated for TBI and starting a care plan for migraines and neurological problems. I’m sure I would have taken my life if it wern’t for my ability to compartmentalize these memories and physical ailements. I was able to function over the years, but not as a very good person. It has been remarkable that the VA has found some of my medical records for recent c & p as I received several replies from archives that there were no records available. I was afraid to ever approach the VA because I truly believed from the superior who assulted me that they had power to revoke benefits I worked hard to obtain. That asside, I have been extremely pleased with the VA. I have been receiveing excellent care and my family can tolorate me, now. It’s a brave new world for me now. I’m learning new ways to cope. While I know I will never fully be cured, I’m thankful I’m at the right place. I’m the poster child for those with truely psychological and head injuries can be just as traumatic as physical/obvious ones. I’m realizing now I should be proud of my service, and not ashamed. Apps like these I’m sure are not perfect as well as the VA, but they have been the only one with the expertise to help me an my family. I’m sure I’ll recive some sort of rating. All I expect is that my health care be taken care of. That much they owe me. There are many like me who are afraid to get treatment, many I’m sure are dead. Most don’t report sexual trauma. It took me 21 years and an almost deadly event to make me seek treatment. I Thank all those vets and soldiers defending our country with injuries similar to min, including the professionals at the VA who have helped me so far. They have been very good to me. I’m now starting to believe that I have a chance to live a long and fulfilling life with purpose. There’s nothing stronger than the heart of a volunteer, and I am starting realize again that I am proud to be an American.

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john essary August 4, 2012 at 10:26 am

Veterans rave about PTSD service dogs, but research lags
By Rebecca Ruiz, NBC News
An estimated 13 to 20 percent of the more than 2.6 million service members who served in Iraq or Afghanistan since 2001 have or may develop PTSD, creating a pool of possible patients as large as 520,000 people. Even if a fraction of those veterans could benefit from a PTSD service dog, there is no pipeline to provide them in a consistent, safe manner.
“He’s there for me constantly, everywhere I go, everything I do,” Galmiche said. “It’s like the brotherhood I had in Vietnam where we counted on each other for everything. This dog gives me the same sense.”
Rebecca Ruiz is a reporter at NBC News and a 2011-2012 Rosalynn Carter Mental Health
this is much better and the reasons are in this study.

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