PTSD Resolution (reg. charity No. 1133188), a charity formed specifically to provide counselling for forces’ veterans suffering from military PTSD, has warned that the current level of provision of care is failing many former servicemen and women.
As highlighted in BBC 3 “Life after Helmand”, symptoms of military trauma include flashbacks, nightmares and depression. Without appropriate help the result can be family breakdown, homelessness, criminality and even suicide.
Piers Bishop, director of counselling at PTSD Resolution, comments:
“ Current provision is still inadequate, by definition, because forces’ veterans are still suffering and in some cases sadly dying. The UK has to do more to reach people whose lives have been turned upside down by traumatic experiences in the services, and that means doing more at a local level, and that there's an important role for organisations that are not connected to central government.
“ Our experience at Resolution is that some traumatised soldiers are very wary of any dealings with the authorities, partly because they blame them for the trauma in the first place but also because if 'they' know about the extent of the trauma it might jeopardise future employment in the forces. So organisations like Resolution, which work beneath the radar and resolve trauma locally, with an absolute minimum of cost, fuss, wait or bureaucracy, may well turn out to be very important in helping individuals returning from Afghanistan. Cost is just £500 for a complete programme on average.”
PTSD Resolution’s network of 200 counsellors operates nationwide to provide support to resolve military trauma, with a success rate of 8 out of 10 cases for veterans who complete the programme (Source: PTSD report 2012).
According to PTSD Resolution chairman Colonel Tony Gauvain (retired): “PTSD Resolution offers fast help, with an average of just five counselling sessions required on an outpatient basis. No referrals are needed. PTSD Resolution is a very lean organisation: there are no salaried staff or premises: funds are used for therapy and to provide support and information on the help available”.