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NIMH Staff Honored for Work on Behalf of Returning Veterans

Science Update

Several NIMH staff members will be awarded the 2008 Hubert H. Humphrey Award for Service to America for their work in addressing the mental health needs of returning veterans. The “NIMH Team on Addressing the Mental Health Needs of Returning Combat Veterans in the Community” is being recognized for “extraordinary creativity and program efficiency in launching new research initiatives focused on the mental health needs of military service members, veterans and their families.”

In an effort to address pressing scientific and public health needs related to the ongoing wars, these staff developed a new research initiative  seeking grants designed to describe and evaluate national, state and local programs that address the mental health needs of returning service members and their families. The award also recognizes enhanced coordination between NIMH and the U.S. Departments of Defense (DOD) and Veterans Affairs (VA) toward reducing the risk of serious disorders among service members and their families.

The new research effort is in response to reports of substantial mental distress and adjustment difficulties among military personnel returning from Iraq and Afghanistan, and among their family members. NIMH recognizes that the mental health needs of veterans extend beyond the DOD and VA to the community and that attention should be focused on the reach and impact of community-based programs.

The new NIMH research effort is seeking to bring together the expertise of DOD, VA and the civilian research community to gather evidence about veterans’ use of and access to care, and quality of that care. The new effort also aims to describe veterans’ mental and physical health, costs associated with their health care, and challenging aspects associated with returning to civilian life. By coordinating with DOD and VA, the NIMH team is working to ensure that new research will complement existing DOD and VA efforts.

The awards ceremony will take place January 6, 2009, at 10:00am, in the Great Hall of the Hubert H. Humphrey Building in Washington, D.C.

The NIMH awardees are:

Robert K. Heinssen Jr., Ph.D., ABPP. (lead)
David A. Chambers, Ph.D.
Jovier D. Evans, Ph.D.
Steven A. Gerber, OTH
Amy B. Goldstein, Ph.D.
Lauren D. Hill, Ph.D.
Robert A. Mays Jr., Ph.D.
Jane L. Pearson, Ph.D.
Michael Schoenbaum, Ph.D.
Farris Tuma, Sc.D., MHS
Christine M. Ulbricht
Philip Wang, M.D., Dr.P.H.