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January 22, 2014

Mental health summit for area veterans

MACON — The Carl Vinson VA Medical Center in Dublin, has announced that its next mental health summit to discuss veterans' mental health needs and how local organizations can assist the VA will be held Wednesday in Macon.

Recognizing the importance of community cooperation and effective communication in meeting veterans' mental health needs, in June 2013 President Obama directed all 152 VA medical centers to host community mental health summits. The summits began in July and continue regularly throughout the VA's service areas. The Dublin VA also held its first summit in July, and encouraged by its success, has been holding similar summits since.

The Macon summit is intended to discover how VA can better collaborate with veterans, their families, and organizations, to provide the best quality mental health care to America's veterans. Topics will include an overview of VA programs and services, such as preventing veteran suicides, ending veteran homelessness, and general mental health services available. The summit will also discuss how local organizations can partner with VA to facilitate veterans' mental health needs and what gaps may exist in care that needs to be addressed.

Hosted by Dublin VA Mental Health director Dr. Matthew Geyer, the summit will be held at the Medical Center of Central Georgia at 777 Hemlock St., Macon, in the Eversole Auditorium, with registration beginning at 8:30 a.m. The summit will begin at 9 a.m. and wrap up at noon. Agencies interested in participating are encouraged to bring their contact information and other pertinent materials. 

Questions about the summit can be directed to Charity Naim, LCSW, at Charity.Naim@va.gov or 478-272-1210 ext. 3523

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