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NARSAD's 5th Annual 'Mission Possible' Symposium Offers Insight to PTSD and Other Mental Illnesses

Thursday, March 20, 2008 General News J E 4
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Free Event is Open to the Public, Providing Access to Psychiatric Experts Specializing in Trauma, Genetics, Mood Disorders and Childhood Illnesses



WASHINGTON, March 19 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Mental health professionals and residents of the Greater Washington, D.C., area will have an opportunity on Sunday, March 30th, to learn more about the growing crisis of PTSD in the military and about other serious mental illnesses, including bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and childhood disorders, in an all-day, free public forum presented by NARSAD, the world's leading charity dedicated to mental health research.



The forum, which will feature talks by some of the country's leading experts on these issues, is NARSAD's fifth annual Washington, D.C., "Mission Possible" Mental Health Research Symposium. It will take place from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at George Washington University's Lisner Auditorium, located at 730 21st Street, N.W. (On the Metro, orange line to Foggy Bottom). While the symposium is free and open to the public, reservations are recommended and can be made by sending an e-mail to events@narsad.org, or by calling 703-535-1577.



Mental illness disables the lives of nearly 60 million Americans each year, making it the leading disability for people aged 15-44. It affects our families, friends, neighbors, co-workers and businesses. NARSAD presents free symposia around the country to make mental health experts and the latest developments in research more accessible to the public.



The March 30th symposium in Washington, D.C., will kick off with a session on "PTSD in our Armed Forces," where attendees will receive a comprehensive briefing from some of the most prominent experts on the prevalence of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), which now affects more than 7 million adult Americans, and traumatic brain injury (TBI), their causes and symptoms, and new treatment developments.



The presentations will include:



-- "Taking Care of Soldiers and Families - Past, Present and Future" by Lt. Gen (R) Theodore G. Stroup, Jr., vice president of education, Association of the U.S. Army, who will discuss how the Army historically has addressed mental trauma to soldiers, citing instances where it has been on the forefront of treating battlefield trauma.



-- "PTSD: From Battlefront to Homefront" by Robert Ursano, M.D., chairman of the Department of Psychiatry, and director of the Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress at the Uniformed Services University School of Medicine, who will discuss rates of PTSD and TBI, effects on soldiers and their families, and planning for the healthcare needs of returning veterans.



-- "Psychological Health and Traumatic Brian Injury" by Colonel (P) Loree Sutton, M.D., the newly installed director of the Department of Defense Center for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury, who will present on the Center's efforts to address the healthcare needs of service personnel and their families who are coping with psychological problems and brain injury.



-- "The Mental Health Consequences of War" by Yuval Neria, Ph.D., associate professor of clinical psychology, Department of Psychiatry and Epidemiology, Columbia University, who will discuss the mental health consequences of war. Dr. Neria is also the director of the trauma and PTSD program at the New York State Psychiatric Institute. He brings significant insight as a veteran of the Yom Kippur War in 1973. His experience of having served and suffered an injury during that war has played a major role in his scientific work. A published author in the areas of PTSD and mood disorders such as depression and bipolar disorder, he is also an expert on PTSD in the general population, especially among those affected by the 9/11 terrorist attacks.



The second session
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