Wednesday, 29 October 2014

The military covenant commits to priority care for all who have been physically and mentally injured in service.  

Whilst physical injuries are easy to recognise and have a need for immediate and lifetime attention, mental injuries such as post traumatic stress are less visible, and very often delayed in symptom manifestation.  

The severity of the symptoms are very often compounded by underlying trauma in earlier life before military service, and by other stressful events more recently but occurring outside of military service.  

This reinforces the need for a more whole-person whole-life approach by the Department of Health to widen the access to the highly effective personal therapy that exists outside the NHS and that does not at present benefit from any of the £mmm being spent on statutory services and the larger charities that are often not fit for purpose. 

Friday, 3 October 2014

A UK Forces' Veteran writes:
"I have just completed 6 weeks of therapy which was kindly provided free of charge by your wonderful charity. After suffering with PTSD for the best part of 15 years or more it was time to get some proper help after years of suffering in silence and not having the confidence to ask. I came across PTSD Resolution by chance after following them via Twitter and reading the work they do before going I knew about the main website.

"When I watched the video on the website of the veteran telling his story I was blown away by how similar if not exact his experiences were. I watched this video again and again over for days as it was difficult to take in someone who felt and suffered the same way I do. From the moment I finished watching it I was determined to fight this condition and contacted the charity the very next day to see what they could do.

"I spoke to lovely lady, whose name I can`t remember, who was very supportive and made me feel at ease while I explained my story and symptoms something I had never ever done before. Within 24 hrs of me speaking to PTSD Resolution I had my first appointment booked with a local psychotherapist that specialised in ex veterans suffering with PTSD the very next week. I met the therapist at the first session and immediately felt safe and able to tell him my feelings and my past experiences.

"I spent 11 years in the British Army in some extremely difficult and testing situations which had left mostly a lot of negative effects on me. Although these events happened in the 90`s in both Balkan conflicts and Northern Ireland what I saw and witnessed have stayed with me ever since. My marriage had failed due to my actions, drinking had become a problem, not because I was drinking all the time but drinking till I could not remember anything which for me was relief.

"I became very withdrawn from day to day life and started to avoid certain situations. The symptoms got progressively worse, lack of sleep, loud noises, panic attacks, unable to concentrate, hyper vigilance, reliving past experiences, uncontrollable crying and emotions with the feeling or terror and worthlessness till in my case it just gets worse and worse feeling there is no way out. My life was imploding before my very eyes and felt I could not do anything about it until one day when I feared for my own safety! Not a good situation to be in when you have children that have had no idea what I was going though and would of left them devastated. This was now very real. If I hadn’t stopped there and then I would not be here today writing this testimonial!

"Getting back to the treatment it is very intense, tiring and emotional with lots of tears and some sessions feeling completely drained. You relive the past horrors but learn new skills the therapist teaches you to combat your negative thoughts and experiences. Now these work, or they did for me, however sometimes they will not, and they didn’t at times, you have to prepare yourself to accept this and fight through it. I could feel myself changing week by week as sessions went by and feeling more positive something that I had not felt for a very long time.

"Each session you are scored on the past 7 days experiences something you have to complete yourself and at the end of the treatment you are shown the progress you have made via the scores that you submitted. When I saw my scores at the end of the 6 sessions I was gob smacked these were my scores not somebody else`s they weren’t made up nor had they been tampered with these were mine and a true record of progress.

"This treatment has saved my life and shown there is a future for me. I may need to go back in the future that I am very aware of but it`s my challenge now and I am determined to get better. I can`t express enough my gratitude to the wonderful people of PTSD resolution and those that raise vital funds for this charity. I feel very emotional writing this. I will be forever in debt and my aim now is to raise my funds for PTSD Resolution so that I can help the next veteran who comes forward with PTSD and desperately needs help. Please don’t suffer in silence there is help out there it takes confidence to ask but YOU can do it!

"If you want use this for the website and or Facebook/Twitter page then you have my approval I am also willing to take part in any surveys or anything else that could help others.

"Many thanks again I thank you from the bottom of my heart."

A British Forces Veteran

Monday, 14 July 2014

The effectiveness of PTSD treatment provided by the Defense Department and VA is unknown

In a report mandated by Congress the US National Academy of Sciences has said  “The U.S. Department of Defense and U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs should track the outcomes of treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) provided to service members and veterans and develop a coordinated and comprehensive strategy to do so,…” and that “Without tracking outcomes, neither DOD nor VA knows whether it is providing effective or adequate PTSD care, for which they spent $294 million and more than $3 billion, respectively, in 2012..”  

The Chair of the committee at the Academy is Sandro Galea, who is professor and chair of the department of epidemiology, at Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University, New York City.  

He says that “given that the DOD and VA are responsible for serving millions of service members, families, and veterans, it is surprising that no PTSD outcome measures are used consistently to know if these treatments are working or not.  They could be highly effective, but we won’t know unless outcomes are tracked and evaluated.”

“The report recommends that DOD and VA develop, coordinate, and implement a measurement-based PTSD management system that documents patients’ progress over the course of treatment, regardless of where they receive treatment, and does long-term follow-up using standardized and validated instruments."

The same strange state of affairs also applies in the UK, where large sums of public money are spent with no clear way of knowledge of which approaches or providers produce useful change.
UK charity PTSDResolution has consistently made full, anonymised, data available to any bona-fide researcher on request, as it believes that this vital information should be made available by any therapeutic service to any interested parties, including Veterans, donors, large service charities and the various government institutions that have an interest in the welfare of our Veterans.

PTSD Resolution keeps meticulous records of every client, using standard DoH outcome measures, and can show precisely what has happened to every client in the course of therapy.

Over the last 120 cases for which we have CORE-10 as well as IES-E data over 75% of our cases have experienced ‘reliable improvement’ in clinical terms. We suggest that, as recommended by the report for Congress in the US concludes, it would be in the interests of all concerned to pool data and investigate ways of getting better value for money from the UK spend on treatment for Veterans with mental health problems.

Given appropriate funding PTSD Resolution would wish to conduct follow up research to determine how well veterans cope at a significant period after the last treatment. Organisations wishing to support this work are invited to contact us via the web site. See Key Facts

Friday, 11 July 2014

New major funder for PTSD Resolution: UK Joint Security Associations (JSA). Inaugural annual fundraising event will be held in London on Tuesday 30th September. It is planned the event will raise in excess of £40,000.

PTSD Resolution is a UK charity for Forces veterans that pays no salaries and has no fixed assets because all funds are used to relieve military PTSD.

The JSA comprises the following - huge thanks to these top professional organisations:-

1. The @ADSgroupUK is helping us to resolve military trauma. 
ADS is a top trade organisation advancing the UK Aerospace, Defence, Security & Space industries - backing PTSD Resolution to end military trauma suffered by forces' veterans

2. ASIS is a major supporter of PTSD Resolution @ASIS_Intl .
ASIS is a leading organisation for security professionals, with over 38,000 members worldwide. It's supporting PTSD Resolution and our unique 8 out of 10 success rate in resolving military trauma

3. City of London Crime Prevention Association @CitySecuritymag supporting PTSD Resolution with our uniquely network of 200 therapists for treatment for UK veterans' trauma London's own professional security body

4. Next IPSA supports PTSD Resolution's work in treating veteran's trauma in an average of just 5 sessions. International Professional Security Association & Security Institute is a membership body for individuals and companies working in security and associated roles

5. Big thanks finally to Security Institute @SyInstitute & support for PTSD Resolution.
The - member organisation for security professionals
- for 15 years it has worked to promote the highest possible standards of integrity and professional competence in the business of security

Thanks to all!

Patrick Rea, Campaign Director & Trustee
Key Facts: 
PTSD Resolution (charity number 1133188)

Tags Military trauma, PTSD treatment, UK Forces Veterans,

Friday, 14 February 2014

Ex-Army and ex-Prison Officer: Glenn's story

To: PTSD Resolution

Hi, my name is Glenn Owen

I am ex-Army and an ex Prison Officer and because of the type of Treatment that I have been fortunate to have had with PTSD Resolution, I no longer feel the victim I once did, nor need the medication I was once on, I no longer have the nightmares I had and I now feel well and able to cope with life once again.

I joined the Army in 1977 aged 18.

During my service I saw active service in N.Ireland once for 6 months and towards the end of my service I had a 2 yr Deployment in the Province, which was also a stressful and eventful time.

I left the Army in 1986 and joined The Prison Service. Whilst I was working at HMP Longlartin I was involved in an incident where a Prisoner had been violently attacked and I attempted to resuscitate and treat him, however his injuries were so severe that he died whilst attempts were being made to keep him alive.

This incident was the catalyst to the start and continuance of my onslaught of PTSD. It was the last straw in a series of events over the years which I likened to the Tilt on a pinball machine, you can flip and knock the machine but if you knock it to hard then it tilts and this is what happened to me.

Firstly I turned to drink to blot out my nightmares and the bad feelings that I was having, I became aggressive to my close family and so to feel better I drank more until I had a complete breakdown in my Doctors Surgery.

I was put on anti-depressants and referred to be accessed by Mental Health services. I was eventually diagnosed with ‘PTSD and I was given most forms of recognised NHS treatment, I had EMDR, Group Therapy and individual therapy, between May 2000 up to July 07. I was put on Seroxset by my treating Psychiatrist But this didn’t seem to work on me in fact it induced me to want to end it all and I was switched on to Venlafaxine, yet more pills,

I was eventually passed on to my local Counselling Services and it was here the I started to see a man named John. John was ex-Army/Navy and it was like someone had turned the light on. 

From this John put me in touch with Jayne Timings (PTSD Resolution) and it was now that I started to get the treatment that I was so in need of.

I had my first session with Jayne on the 4th July 07 and she conducted her assessment of me using then IOES this produced an initial score of 84 out of 92, Which I might add was up on the one I was given at the start of the NHS Treatment so my condition had become worse.
I was afraid at first to open up to her but John had told me that I would be able to trust her so I did and have never looked back. I needed several rewinds as I had accumulated quite a few problems over the years.

Jayne was very patient with me and I do feel that had I not been able to have the treatment with her then I would not be here with you all today. My life is getting back on track and I now relish every day. I am without doubt that all this is down to this type of treatment and would urge other suffers to that it and would beg the powers that be to make it available as a right.


As told to Patrick Rea - a writer and Campaign Director for PTSD Resolution  

Friday, 20 December 2013

How much should you give? Remember The 100 Hour Rule

Give — But *Not* Until It Hurts. 
Giving makes us happier than receiving. In fact, it can create a feedback loop of happiness in your life.
However, being a martyr stresses you out and is bad for your health.
Research shows that on the job, people who engage in selfless giving end up feeling overloaded and stressed, as well as experiencing conflict between work and family.This is even true in marriages: in one study of married couples, people who failed to maintain an equilibrium between their own needs and their partner’s needs became more depressed over the next six months.
What to do? Do all your giving one day a week.
The chunkers achieved gains in happiness; the sprinklers didn’t. Happiness increased when people performed all five giving acts in a single day, rather than doing one a day. Lyubomirsky and colleagues speculate that “spreading them over the course of a week might have diminished salience and power or made them less distinguishable from participants habitual kind of behavior.”
How much should you give? Remember The 100 Hour Rule. One hundred hours a year — in other words, 2 hours per week.
One hundred seems to be a magical number when it comes to giving. In a study of more than two thousand Australian adults in their mid-sixties, those who volunteered between one hundred and eight hundred hours per year were happier and more satisfied with their lives than those who volunteered fewer than one hundred or more than eight hundred hours annually. In another study, American adults who volunteered at least one hundred hours in 1998 were more likely to be alive in 2000. There were no benefits of volunteering more than one hundred hours. This is the 100-hour rule of volunteering. It appears to be the range where giving is maximally energizing and minimally draining.
A hundred hours a year breaks down to just two hours a week.Research shows that if people start volunteering two hours a week, their happiness, satisfaction and self-esteem go up a year later.
(More on the power of giving here.)
Want to be a giver and be happier? Share this post with a friend and spread some happiness.

The 100 Hour Rule: you can support charity PTSD Resolution's programme for Forces' Veterans suffering from military PTSD - and their families. 
We welcome supporters of all kinds.
See our news on Facebook or contact details 

Monday, 21 October 2013

PTSD Resolution annual conference - you should have been there...

PTSD Resolution held its annual conference on Saturday 12th October 2013, and on the same day it was featured a number of times on BBC TV: see some clips on the BBC and also here

To see more TV clips and catch up with the latest news and media exposure for Resolution see our Facebook page.

Tony Gauvain, Chairman of PTSD Resolution, opened the conference and highlighted the fact that 419 referrals had received treatment to date, and we are currently taking on two new referrals a week. The direction for the coming year is to gain membership of COBSEO; to be accredited by PSA through the Human Givens Institute; and to compete for tenders with CCGs.

Bill Andrews presented the latest evidence of HG and PTSD Resolution’s effectiveness. Bill's slide presentation can be seen here or Bill will talk you through it here and here This presentation is extraordinarily useful to anyone who wants to understand how Resolution works and what sort of results are being achieved for our veterans.

Extracts from Chris Terrill’s TV series Battle Scarred preceded a discussion to explore the nature of Veterans’ trauma and whether there is a case for the Justice system to take more account of the effects when determining sentence. A better balance needs to be found between maintaining the deterrent of prison and providing opportunity for treatment and reduced sentencing.

An extract from an interview with Tom and Sue at his 'Shaveathon' led into a discussion about the impact on families living with traumatised Veterans. Wendy Houghton from Families of the Brave and Linda Hoggan who has created a parenting programme ‘Just What We Need’ led the discussion. A major conclusion was that service families will benefit from better and more trauma awareness training to learn how to recognise, understand, and manage the impact of trauma.

Martin Smith gave a presentation on Mindfulness and how it can take over from where the heavy-duty business of trauma therapy comes to an end.

Dr. Robin Bennet, a clinical psychologist with a special interest in trauma, particularly in childhood, gave a fascinating insight into the effects of trauma on the brain before and after treatment.

Carly Raby then presented a complex case study which illustrated many of the complications Robin had been describing and opened up for the audience how Resolution can take on the hardest of cases, thanks to the expertise of its therapists.

Piers Bishop concluded with an exhortation to generate funds, especially on 5 December via the Big Give