One of those life-changing losses for aging vets was serving our country in the World War II. The long-term impacts that experience can have on those who served have been in a state of denial by the Greatest Generation, and the veterans themselves.
The fact is, besides The VA itself, paltry attempts have been made understanding the results of war of the 9 million WWII vets and their families have hidden psychic wounds like PTSD
When a social worker or care manager does an intake, family and client do not identify themselves as veterans there may be silence. They may not get to those deep wounds without strong support from the aging professional or GCM, in an effort to avoid confronting the pain and trauma and reliving the experience. ,WWII may be avoided at all costs sabotaging the VA’s help.
A deadly example is my own father did not seek services from VA for PTSD for 50 years until he found my brother dead.His long hidden throbbing wound came to the surface and with this and I was able to get him to the VA for help after 50 years. Help a veteran before something sears and ruptures their life like this.
If You are a geriatric social worker, GCM or Aging Professional – take these 5 steps to help an Older Veteran see if she/he qualifies for Veterans benefits.
1) Add questions to your psychosocial assessment that prompt military history and veteran’s benefits under financial section and asking Adding a question for partners/ wives to prompt connection to a military veteran through marriage
2) If yes.
3) Access benefits for Older Vets or call the VA at1-800-827-1000.
4) Locate the nearest VA center and arranging transportation there. VA centers are best equipped to assess the services for which an individual qualifies.
5) Locate a local veterans service office and take the veteran or wife there for more information.
Handbook of Geriatric Care Management 4th edition includes a new chapter that will help you help vets Maximizing the Health and Wells-Being of Older Veterans by Dr. Lenard Kaye, director of the Center for Aging at the University of Maine and Glenn Osbourne, director of the National Veterans Legal Aid Group . As an aging life or geriatric care manager, or senior advocate, learn how to to get elder veteran’s the benefits they so deserve.