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Experts on PTSD come together for forum at Royal Roads University

April 5, 2012
Tags: military

Victoria – Experts on post-traumatic stress disorder, military personnel and civilians who have been affected by the disorder, and care providers will come together at Royal Roads University on April 12 to explore the current capabilities and gaps in delivering support to individuals living with PTSD.

The PTSD Forum, organized by retired rear admiral and Royal Roads Prof. Roger Girouard, is intended to form an assessment of how the care community can build a more coherent regional strategy to reduce the risk of under-diagnoses resulting in victims falling through the cracks.

“Canadian Forces and the larger community have to start coming to grips with a better understanding of the issue and getting past some of the mythologies,” says Girouard, who teaches in the School of Peace and Conflict Management. “There are things at play here that individuals have no control over and that demands compassion and understanding, not shunning and isolation. To get past that isolation mode, a broader understanding is required.”

A key goal of the forum is to allow attendees to connect more broadly than circumstances have afforded to date, to build a trauma-informed community of care to support the broader client base from Canadian Forces members, to civilian victims of tragedy, to the homeless population.

Speakers include Canadian Forces head psychiatrist Lieutenant Colonel Rakesh Jetly; Lieutenant Colonel Chris Linford, who worked as a doctor in Afghanistan and has PTSD; and Karen Ledger, a registered nurse and counsellor who practises emotional freedom techniques. The event is at capacity and will be livestreamed at

“The forum will allow for a respectful and open dialogue on an issue that impacts on the health of individuals and communities,” says Paul Corns, associate vice-president, Community Relations and Advancement at Royal Roads. “Reflecting the growing research on the incidents of PTSD, the response to the forum has been very positive and the university is pleased to bring together an impressive group for an important beginning.”

Royal Roads University was established by the Province of British Columbia in 1995 specifically to deliver quality applied and professional programs to advance professionals in the workplace. The university blends online and on-campus learning with current, real-world relevance for doctorate, graduate and undergraduate degrees, certificates, diplomas, executive, custom and continuing education.


For media queries, contact:

Communications officer Doug Ozeroff, 250.391.2526, cell 250.812.5065


PTSD Forum agenda
April 12, 2012

8-8:30 a.m.: Coffee and registration

8:30-8:50 a.m.: Welcome and overview

8:50-10 a.m.: A macro look: PTSD, the state of what we know
Lieutenant Colonel Rakesh Jetly, psychiatrist, Directorate of Mental Health, Canadian Forces
Juan C. Cargnello M.Ps., consultant psychologist, Veterans Affairs Canada

10-10:20 a.m.: Coffee

10:20-noon: A micro look: Interventions and research
Greg Prodaniuk, Operational Stress Injury Social Support (OSISS)
Phil Enns, Vancouver Island Health Authority
Dr. Marvin Westwood, professor, counselling psychology, University of B.C.

Noon-12:50 p.m.: Lunch
Speaker: Paul Wehmeier, former Canadian Forces

12:50-2 p.m.: A personal look: Voices from the client base
Lieutenant Colonel Chris Linford, worked as a doctor in Afghanistan and has PTSD
Dr. Tim Black, professor, counselling psychology, University of Victoria

2-2:20 p.m.: Pause

2:20-3:30 p.m.: A different look: Alternative and emerging treatments
Atholl Malcolm, psychologist, bio-feedback plus
Karen Ledger, nurse and counsellor, emotional freedom techniques

3:30-4:30 p.m.: A future look: For the Capital Regional District and B.C.
Speaker: Dr. Tim Black