Northwell Health is dedicating the time and resources to train our physicians, clinicians and health care providers to understand the unique needs of the veteran population. Without proper physician training, too many veterans go undiagnosed and the effects of their trauma can go untreated — severely impacting their quality of life. This training is available to all caregivers: family medicine doctors, nurses, emergency medicine, behavioral health and all medical specialists. By bringing in experts who can educate the staff in our clinical centers and hospitals we will ensure they understand and can identify the most common conditions among veterans.
Pioneering access and care for military families
The Unified Behavioral Health Center for Military Veterans and their Families (UBHC) in Bay Shore, NY is a first-of-its-kind collaborative effort between Northwell Health and the VA Medical Center in Northport, NY, created to comprehensively treat veterans and their families. This revolutionary concept was a result of Northwell’s willingness to see and understand veterans fully and, ultimately, care for them differently. Because Northwell realized that a veteran’s health would suffer if his or her family wasn’t included, UBHC was created to bring together every member of their family, providing behavioral health support for spouses and children while veterans receive coordinated clinical care through the VA.
The Real Story: William Beckenhaupt
The empathetic care that physicians at Northwell give to veterans can be seen through William Beckenhaupt’s story.
During his tour of duty in Iraq with the Army’s 82nd Airborne Division, he jumped out of planes, endured concussion-causing events and rough landings, witnessed constant attacks and severely injured his knees and back. Upon his return, William suffered – through the physical pain and deep traumatic distress he fearfully tried to hide.
Two years after his return, he was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injuries. He began individual therapy, but William and his wife, Gayle, were also painfully struggling in their marriage. He recognized that his family needed support, together, and they began family counseling at the Unified Behavioral Health Center (UBHC).
Through the UHBC’s collaborative care model, expert support and guidance, he, Gayle and their three young children, are now thriving.
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