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U.S. Dept. of Veterans Affairs | VISN 20 MIRECC | Newsflash | Resources

The amphibious transport dock ship USS Green Bay maneuvers through Elliot Bay to the Port of Seattle to participate in the 61st annual Seattle Seafair Fleet Week. Seafair activities allow U.S. and Canadian sailors to experience the local community and to promote awareness of the maritime forces.

National VA Chaplain Service - VA Chaplain Service is a vital part of the VA Medical Center, dedicated to providing the highest quality pastoral care to the veteran.Chaplains are on call 24/7. The mission of Chaplain Service is to provide spiritual/religious care to all Veterans and their family members.

The Disabled American Veterans - The Disabled American Veterans (DAV) operates a fleet of vehicles around the country to provide free transportation to VA medical facilities for injured and ill veterans. Ford has been a loyal friend of DAV since 1922, when Henry Ford provided 50 Model T Fords to help disabled Word War I veterans attend the organization’s second national convention. As part of Ford's longstanding relationship, DAV members receive X-Plan Partner pricing on eligible new Ford and Lincoln vehicles, as well as up to $1000 reimbursement to adapt their vehicle to fit their needs through the Ford Accessibility program. Navigating the resources available to veterans can be confusing, but DAV believes no veteran should have to go it alone. The DAV has tools, resources and information about Service Animals, PTSD, Moral Injury, and health concerns for veterans who deployed to combat zones. All services provided by DAV are free of charge. 

Real Warriors Outreach Center - The Real Warriors Campaign promotes a culture of support for psychological health by encouraging the military community to reach out for help whether coping with the daily stresses of military life, or concerns like depression, anxiety and posttraumatic stress disorder. The Defense Department’s Psychological Health Center of Excellence has a mission to break the stigma associated with psychological health concerns and encourage those who are coping with a psychological health concern to seek help. The campaign links service members, veterans and their families with care and provides free, confidential resources including online articles, print materials, videos and podcasts. If you or someone you know is coping with any concerns, know that reaching out is a sign of strength.

National Center for PTSD - The mission of the National Center for PTSD is to advance the clinical care and social welfare of America's Veterans and others who have experienced trauma, or who suffer from PTSD, through research, education, and training in the science, diagnosis, and treatment of PTSD and stress-related disorders.

PTSD Coach - PTSD Coach Online is for anyone who needs help with upsetting feelings. Trauma survivors, their families, or anyone coping with stress can benefit.

PTSD Service Dogs for Veterans - America's VetDogs - Making the decision to work with a Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) service dog is a transformational event that extends into every area of a handler's life. Because of this momentous change, it’s crucial that each of our students is teamed with a dog that best suits that person’s capability, lifestyle, mobility, personality and psychological needs. As each applicant is accepted to our program, we carefully match them with a dog that’s right for them, and the power of their bond makes ordinary moments extraordinary. 

Service Dogs for Veterans - To receive any type of medical service through VA, you must register at the Health Administration enrollment section of a VA medical facility or online. Once registered, a referral to a specialist may be requested through the assigned VA primary care provider. The specialist will complete an evaluation and make a clinical determination on the need for assistive devices, including a service dog. Each Veteran’s case is reviewed and evaluated by a prescribing clinician for the following:

 Means to care for the dog currently and in the future.
 Goals that are accomplished through the use of the dog.
 Goals that are to be accomplished through other assistive technology or therapy.

Deciding if a service dog is right for your lifestyle can be a challenging decision. There are so many factors that must be considered that it can get overwhelming. The following resources should be able to help you in the journey as you work with your medical providers and personal support system to make the best choice for you!

American Kennel Club Update: President Signs Federal PAWS for Veterans Therapy Act - Properly trained service dogs can be invaluable to the mental and emotional health of our veterans who have sacrificed so much for our country. The Puppies Assisting Wounded Servicemembers Veterans Therapy (PAWS for Veterans Therapy) Act is a ground-breaking measure that recognizes the importance of service dogs in assisting veterans suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), Military Sexual Trauma (MST) and other mental disorders related to their military service. Specifically, the measure establishes a pilot program within VA to allow veterans to gain therapy through the training of service dogs that are provided and monitored by qualified non-profit organizations. Upon completion of training by a qualified veteran, the dog may be adopted by the trainer or another qualified veteran for continuing therapy. Dogs trained to be PTSD service dogs meet the standards and competency outcomes necessary to be effective service dogs as defined by the Americans With Disabilities Act.

Health.MIL Traumatic Brain Injury Center of Excellence - TBICoE continue promotion of state-of-the-science traumatic brain injury care from point-of-injury to reintegration for service members, veterans and their families. Access TBI clinical tools, educational resources, and research information that helps the Defense Health Agency provide optimal patient outcomes.

PTSD

VA Launchpad for Veterans - The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Launchpad helps Veterans and their Caregivers find and use VA apps. The VA Launchpad organizes VA apps and capabilities to help you more easily find the tools VA has made available for you. Mobile applications (apps) provide self-help, education and support following trauma. We also have treatment companion apps, for use with a health care provider, to make treatment easier. Links to new apps automatically appear in the VA Launchpad when they become available, making it simpler to find the resources needed to interact with VA.

Moving Forward Overcoming Lifes Challenges - The app is a convenient way to use stress management and problem solving tools on-the-go. It can be used alone, or in combination with the Moving Forward online course.

PsychArmor - PsychArmor provides education, resources, and strategies for those who provide care for wounded, ill and injured military service members and Veterans. PsychArmor’s library of courses for Military Veteran Caregivers & Families includes over 45 short, evidence-informed videos taught by national subject matter experts. They offer “A Caregiver’s Experience” Binder: A three-ring resource binder that supplements their learning platform with tips and takeaways from courses. This customizable binder provides a central place to track resources and important documents. PsychArmor hosted a webinar series, Conversations with Caregivers, tackling difficult issues such as Substance Abuse, Social Isolation, Mental Health and more. To listen to previous webinars or register for upcoming, visit https://psycharmor.org/usaa-webinar/ 

Use of these Materials and Finding VA Health Care

Please note that the health care information provided in these materials is for educational purposes only. It does not replace the role of a medical practitioner for advice on care and treatment. If you are looking for professional medical care, find your local VA healthcare center by using the VA Facilities Locator & Directory. This page may contain links that will take you outside of the Department of Veterans Affairs website. VA does not endorse and is not responsible for the content of the linked websites.

    Explore Northwest Mental Illness Research, Education and Clinical Center       

Explore VA.gov

VA has a variety of mental health resources, information, treatment options, and more — all accessible to Veterans, Veterans’ supporters, and the general public. Explore the pages below to learn more about a specific mental health topic. Each of these pages includes resources, information on treatment options, and more.

Stories of Support

Telehealth Therapy

For Daniel, Don, and Jennifer, convenient video counseling made it easier to put their health first. Adjusting from military service to civilian life can be both exciting and challenging. Make the Connection

1-800-273-8255

Confidential, toll-free hotline, online chat, and text-messaging service for Veterans, Service members, and their loved ones. Connect with the Veterans Crisis Line to reach caring, qualified responders with the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Mental Health Updates

Explore the latest mental health news, resources, and real-life stories of mental health recovery.

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The Northwest Mental Illness Research, Education and Clinical Center (NW MIRECC) of the Veterans Integrated Services Network (VISN) 20 seeks to improve the mental health and well-being of Veterans through research and dissemination of information to providers both within the VA and the general public. The NW MIRECC mission is to contribute to better treatment of the unseen wounds of war (PTSD, mild traumatic brain injury, and their comorbidities). The VA VISN 20 Northwest Health Network consists of four states across three time zones; Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and Alaska. The primary research center located in VA Puget Sound Health Care System is affiliated with the University of Washington. VA Puget Sound serves Veterans from a five-state area in the Pacific Northwest with two main divisions: American Lake and Seattle. In addition to the main medical centers, VA Puget Sound provides health care services in Washington state at six community-based outpatient clinics in Bellevue, Bremerton, Federal Way, Mount Vernon, Port Angeles, and Seattle. The research center located at VA Portland Heath Care System is affiliated with the Oregon Health and Science University. VA Portland serves Veterans from Oregon and Southwest Washington with two main divisions: Portland and Vancouver. In addition to the main medical centers, VA Portland Health Care System provides health care services in Oregon state at ten outpatient clinics in Bend, Fairview, Hillsboro, North Coast (Camp Rilea), Newport, Lincoln City, Portland, Salem, The Dalles, and West Linn. Vet Centers in the VISN 20 Health Care Network are community-based counseling centers that provide a wide range of social and psychological services, including professional readjustment counseling to eligible Veterans, active-duty Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Coast Guard, Air Force, and Space Force service members, including National Guard and Reserve components, and their families.

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Veterans Crisis Hotline 1-800-273-8255 - If you are having a medical or mental health emergency, dial 911. If you are having thoughts of suicide, dial 1-800-273-8255, then press 1 at the prompt to reach the Veterans Crisis Line