Governor Bill Richardson today announced the award of a contract to conduct
innovative retreats for treating veterans diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).The treatment program will use an integrative approach, combining existing clinical treatments with non-clinical alternative methods.
"Our veterans deserve our full support for serving and protecting our country," Governor Richardson said. "This innovative program will offer a new approach for treating veterans who are battling post-combat issues as they try to transition to civilian life after their military service."
The program is funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Governor Richardson announced a $350,000 allocation from discretionary funds to the Department of Veterans Services earlier this year. The department has contracted with the National Veterans' Wellness & Healing Center in Angel Fire through a competitive process.
The retreats will concentrate on combining existing cognitive processing and prolonged exposure therapies with non-traditional treatments such as yoga, acupuncture, and nature-based therapies. Veterans who are diagnosed with PTSD by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs would be eligible to participate.
"There is a tremendous amount of interest nationwide in using an integrative approach for treating PTSD," said New Mexico Department of Veterans' Services Cabinet Secretary John M. Garcia. "I applaud the Governor for taking this step and opening the door for the state to become recognized as the leader in offering the latest available treatment for affected veterans and their families."
The Department of Veterans' Services will oversee the integrative Wellness Treatment program. For more information about veteran's services, visit www.dvs.state.nm.us.