Allan Schwartz, LCSW, Ph.D. was in private practice for more than thirty years. He is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in the states ...Read More
explains part of the difficulty involved.
One of the veterans I met finally went to a private psychiatrist to get himself diagnosed and treated. After that, he went back to the VA who agreed with the private psychiatrist’s diagnosis and started to treat him. Of course, there is no expense to the veteran involved when the VA provides the treatment and medication.
However, no one person or institution is at fault for these difficulties and obstacles. For example the veteran who started with a private psychiatrist did so because he did not want to run the risk of any of the other army men he knew finding out about his problems. This is another example of the issue of stigma being alive and well.
I even heard of a case where a veteran with PTSD refused a psychiatric service dog because having one would let people know about his disability.
There will be another article about Veterans, PTSD and Psychiatric Service dogs and how they help our veterans.