On Thursday, April 29th, the NATO Council of Canada hosted a presentation with Commodore H.W. Jung, OMM CD, Surgeon General of the Canadian Forces (CF). Commodore Jung spoke about the Health Services of the Canadian Forces and how they operate across Canada and overseas. The Commodore addressed the challenges of providing excellent healthcare services in an operations area during wartime and after veterans return home, followed by the Post Deployment Assessment. To conclude, he spoke about the Canadian Forces in the NATO context, and his experience as NATO tactical evaluator at the Canadian Forces.
After joining the Canadian Forces in 1981, Commodore Jung served in the air campaign of the 1991 Persian Gulf War. He was appointed to the Order of Military Merit in 2001 and promoted to his current rank in June 2009 as the Director General Health Services and appointed Commander of the Canadian Forces Health Services Surgeon General and Queen’s Honorary Physician. He commands over 6,000 CF health care professionals.
Canadian Forces Health Services operate over 40 domestic units and three units overseas; two in Europe and one in Afghanistan. As Commodore Jung noted, in 2006 CF Health Services took over a US Army led Military hospital in Kandahar, Afghanistan. Working within multinational team, CF Health Service representatives have access to highly mobile modern medical equipment specially designed for combat situations. CF Health Services are also mentoring two local hospitals in Kandahar in order to build their capacity and meet patients’ needs. The Commodore also spoke of a new rocket proof Military Hospital that is currently being constructed in Kandahar, it will be fully operational in three months time.
Commodore Jung briefly elaborated on CF Health Services participation in the Haiti disaster relief and the crucial role played in evacuating Canadian entitled nationals.
The final part of the presentation was dedicated to the issues around mental health services within CF that have received substantial coverage in the media since CF’s deployment in Afghanistan. Commodore Jung spoke in detail about the Post Deployment Assessment procedures, treatment and diagnosis for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Mild Traumatic Brain Injury (MTBI). He also spoke about developing a patient-oriented mental health program and introducing new mental health campaigns such as “Be the Difference Campaign” geared towards facilitating fellow servicemen to seek potentially needed treatment and assistance, pre or post deployment.
By Nino Marshania
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