DMHR provides stress management, prevention during wartime environment
OSAN AIR BASE, Republic of Korea -- The 51st Medical Operation Squadron mental health clinic at Osan Air Base, Republic of Korea, provides a variety of services. These include crisis intervention, individual counseling, group therapy, psycho-educational skill training, outreach and prevention, and consultation to commanders. Normally the mental health clinic has a standard schedule, and waits at their offices for incoming patients. However, during emergencies, their mission becomes mobile.
During operational readiness exercise Beverly Bulldog 15-1, the 51st MDOS metal health clinic established a disaster mental health response team. For the first time they practiced this by setting up at two response teams at the Passenger Terminal and Community Center on base. The teams were at hand to offer mental health services for anyone who needed them.
The disaster mental health response teams are groups made up of mental health personnel, chapel service member, Airman and Family Readiness personnel, and volunteers from other unit who prepare Airmen who are or may be exposed to all-hazard incidents or operational stress environments. This is done by providing Airman with ongoing education, intervention, screening, and psychological first aid about significant or high stress events, experiences and stressors.
"The primary goal is early intervention about stress management in order to prevent acute stress disorder and posttraumatic stress disorder," said Maj. Laurence Studer, 51st MDOS mental health flight commander.
The team would post up at various locations on base or visit units directly to provide briefings to groups of Airman and their families or provide individual consultations.
"We want to help Airmen and their families understand that their reactions to abnormal situations, like seeing someone close to them die, are actually normal," said Staff Sgt. Kenous Carrington, 51st MDOS mental health technician. "For example, responses like withdrawal from a group and not being social anymore, trembling, nausea and vomiting can be some extreme reactions to stress and we want to help them cope by letting them know that those reactions are normal."
For more information about the DMHR or the mental health clinic you can contact them at 784-2148.