Researchers present on PTSD in American Indian, Alaska Native veterans

Published on April 21, 2016

Researchers with the National American Indian & Alaska Native Addiction Technology Transfer Center (National AI/AN ATTC) based in the UI College of Public Health recently gave a presentation on post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in American Indian and Alaska Native veterans at a national conference.

Sean Bear, a veteran, member of the Meskwaki tribe, and senior behavioral health and training coordinator with the National AI/AN ATTC, along with veteran and CPH alumna Melissa Fox (MPH ’14), led the roundtable discussion, “Talking Medicine for the Sacred Warrior,” at the 2016 National Tribal Public Health Summit.

Their presentation referenced Fox’s MPH practicum project that she completed with the National AI/AN ATTC. The overarching goal of her practicum was to increase the capacity of mental health providers to treat American Indian and Alaska Native veterans with PTSD.

The roundtable participants included representatives from a group within the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs and the Indian Health Service working on American Indian issues.

“They became very interested in Melissa’s practicum project and asked her permission to read her poster,” reports Anne Helene Skinstad, director of the National AI/AN ATTC. “She shared it, and it is now in many people’s inboxes. We’re very proud that her work has reached this VA/IHS committee.”

After the roundtable discussion, the representatives from the VA/IHS committee on American Indian Veteran Affairs expressed an interest in working with the National AI/AN ATTC on disseminating this program when it is completed.