Behavioral health: Army clinics aim to help leaders better identify issues
Dr. Scott Bodine, chief of beavioral health at the Wiesbaden Health Clinic, talks with visitors during an open house June 11.

WIESBADEN, Germany - The Army's behavioral health clinics are looking at a new way of doing business.
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Based on guidance handed down by Brig. Gen. Keith Gallagher, commander of the U.S. Army Europe Regional Medical Command, behavioral health specialists across Europe were asked to open their doors this month and make some connections with military leaders.
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Those connections, said Dr. Scott Bodine, chief of behavioral health at the Wiesbaden Health Clinic, are important for getting the word out about resources available for Soldiers' behavioral health.
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In Wiesbaden, the behavioral health clinic's June 11 open house was a small gathering of camouflage-clad leaders and men in sports coats and slacks.
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On a long conference table were brochures and pamphlets with suicide prevention tips for leaders, redeployment information and business cards for behavioral health providers working out of the clinic.
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Having commanders who are able to identify issues with Soldiers and to get those Soldiers help is the goal, said Bodine.
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"Historically, there have not been very strong ties between units and behavioral health," said Bodine. "Building a foundation (for those ties) will be a new way of doing business."
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And, he said, unit leaders will always be an important piece to getting information out about resources available to Soldiers.
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"Having a liaison is an important thing," said Bodine.
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The Army, according to Bodine, has made strides in overcoming the stigma associated with asking for mental health help.
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Gary Dombroff, a clinical psychologist with the Wiesbaden Health Clinic, said these days with the advent of shows such as Dr. Phil, people are OK with looking for help. The 30-year child psychologist also noted the importance for parents and unit leaders to recognize the calls for help from the Army's smallest military family members.
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"It's important for rear detachment folks to be sensitive to those who might be experiencing challenges," said Dombroff. "Kids, like adults, can get depressed. It's helpful for the command to know about resources."
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In observance of Mental Health Month in May, ERMC highlighted its resources for addressing behavioral health stressors faced by Soldiers and families to include resiliency training, suicide prevention training and post-traumatic stress disorder assessment, treatment and recovery programs.
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In the past year ERMC has added 65 additional behavioral health providers. And confidential behavioral health care and support is available to Soldiers and authorized civilian employees or family members at Army health clinics Europe-wide and at the Landstuhl Regional Medical Center.
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Dr. Daphne Brown, chief of behavioral health at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center, emphasized that most Soldiers who seek behavioral health support recover and remain on active duty.
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Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16