Medical students learn how to help war vets

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News12 / Friday November 15, 2013

Augusta, Ga (WRDW)----"We need to be very conscious that they have under gone some experiences that some of us... don't even fathom," said Carlos Guerrero

Guerro is a first year medical student and is one of the many future doctors who wants to learn how the war effects vets. Combat troops are becoming a smaller presence in places like, Afghanistan, and as the draw down continues, more vets come home. Some bring back memories.... memories they can't forget.

"Don't tell them that it's in their heads because it's not in their heads. This is a disease, an actual condition," he said.

Guerrero says the week long sessions known as, Forces Wellness Week ,at GRU help him understand how vets are effected by PTSD.

"They are not imaging things, this is how they feel. It can be easy for someone to dismiss it by saying, "it's all in your head, it's not really there." he told News12.

Sirivalli Charmarti also wants to be a doctor and says while PTSD maybe the most recognized condition, it's not the only thing affecting soldiers and their families she may treat one day.

"Women's health.... What happens to the families who are left behind when the husbands goes off to war? And how does family dynamic change?" she said.

Some soldiers can be affected so much they may not even be able to be with their families and end up homeless. That's why the last day of the session is about collecting goods for homeless soldiers who in some cases have nothing.

"I think it feels great to give back; and have the opportunity to give back to these men and women who have served our country and given us the opportunity to do what we do," Guerrero told News12.

If you are a Vet in need or know one who needs help call the following hospitals:
Augusta VA Medical Center
950 15th Street Downtown or 1 Freedom Way Uptown
706-481-6798 706-733-0188

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