The Florida VA program helps elite combatants heal the unseen wounds of war

The Florida VA program helps elite combatants heal the unseen wounds of war

In addition to treating traumatic brain injuries, a unique Florida veteran program is changing the outlook for seeking help in treating multiple deployment clothing and tear. The Post-Employment Rehabilitation and Evaluation Program (PREP) Treating physical injuries and mental health of service members at a hospital in Tampa.

After nine major deployments since 9/11, Green Beret Sergeant Major John Fischet knows better than the physical and emotional costs of most services.

“We had a very rough fight between my first deputies in Afghanistan,” he told CBS News senior investigative reporter Catherine Herridge, who had first-ever access to a special program.

Fischet lost a lot of his team.

“Then I didn’t realize how awkward it was for me, and years after that, I was still thinking about it,” she said.

It is rare to hear directly from special operations forces such as Fischetti, who told CBS News that it may be difficult to ask for help because the mission and their teammates are first in their DNA. More than half of the service members who came through the PREP came from the Special Operations Forces.

“There’s a lot of misunderstanding with young soldiers,” he said. “They think that if they say the command or they tell someone they have a problem, it will make them look bad” “

This week, The Pentagon says 109 U.S. service members suffered traumatic brain injuries An Iranian missile attack on an Iraqi air base last month.

It is estimated that about 20% of service members have traumatic brain injury, PREP Medical Director said. Says Brian Merritt.

Trauma on the battlefield uses PREP virtual reality technology to disrupt balance and re-train the brain to reduce chronic pain and rebuild confidence.

For many service members, the in-patient program is the first time they meet a physician. Service members are in the program for six to 12 weeks for the holistic approach that physicians talk about.

“I use the expression, it’s like I’m peeling an onion, you take one layer at a time, and each layer will find a different problem in it, and you have to find that solution,” Dr. Steven Scott said.

The program is helping many, like Fischetti, in the special operations community. Deputy Commander of Special Operations Vice Admiral Tim Szymanski said in his first television interview that these warships have more to offer, and that assistance is not a “career killer.”

“People are coming forward, and we’re showing that they can go back to duty,” he said. “The testimonial is that people are going through it and taking it back to their teammates … it’s a cause for trust.”

Szymanski added, “It can be a life-changer. I think for those who have come through this program, it is life-changing.”

For Merritt, if service members do not return to duty, it is absolutely valuable to meet their family after the program.

“Because it would be with them, regardless of the future in the military,” he said.

The program is currently at James A. There are only a dozen beds at Haley Veterans Hospital, but there are new motions to expand.

“I plan to move forward and become a Command Sergeant Major and impress my troops on the front line and help them get the support they need,” Fischetti said.

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