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A Strategic Path Forward to Address the Invisible Wounds of War
Since 9/11, over 2.8 million U.S service members have deployed overseas. More than 52,000 have been wounded, but over 6 times that number may be facing challenges with the invisible wounds of war, including traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress.
There are numerous organizations - in both the public and private sector - that are doing tremendous work to address the need for access to, and delivery of, high quality care.
There is an opportunity however, at the national level, to help foster a combined focus in support of:
- Increasing numbers in effective care, improving the delivery of care;
- Maintaining awareness of the invisible wounds and their consequences; and
- Continuing efforts for more precise diagnostics and pharmaceutical resources.
To help facilitate this opportunity and to articulate a strategic path forward, the Military Service Initiative produced "Combating the Invisible Wounds, Creating a Collaborative Tomorrow."
Colonel Matthew F. Amidon, USMCR, is the Director of the Military Service Initiative at the George W. Bush Institute. Colonel Amidon leads the day to day efforts of the Military Service Initiative and the team leading our policy and programmatic work on veteran transition.
Colonel Amidon has served in both active duty and reserve capacities since 1994. As an AV-8B Harrier pilot, he deployed in support of both Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom, at the operational and staff level. In his current reserve capacity he serves as the Deputy Group Commander, Marine Aircraft Group 41, 4th Marine Aircraft Wing, Joint Reserve Base Fort Worth, TX.
Recently, Colonel Amidon was appointed by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to the Creating Options for Veterans' Expedited Recovery (COVER) Commission. COVER provides advice to the VA, the President, and Congress, and examines the benefits of integrative treatments for the mental health conditions of veterans. The commission will also analyze the benefits of incorporating complementary and integrative health treatments in non-government affiliated facilities.
Colonel Amidon is originally from Stowe, Vermont and is a graduate of The University of Vermont. He earned his MBA at Southern Methodist University Cox School of Business in 2009. In 2012, he attended The Eisenhower School for National Security and Resource Strategy where he earned a Master of Science. Colonel Amidon is married with three children.Full Bio
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