Kristie Canegallo, Deputy Chief of Staff for Policy Implementation, Executive Office of the President
Sloan Gibson, Deputy Secretary, Department of Veterans Affairs
Mary Wakefield, Acting Deputy Secretary, Department of Health and Human Services
Robert Work, Deputy Secretary, Department of Defense
Improve mental health outcomes for Service Members, Veterans and their Families. Leveraging the successes made by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), Department of Defense (DoD) and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) in implementing the President’s Executive Order on improving access to mental health services for Veterans, Service members and their families, identify and build on programs and initiatives that have been effective in reducing barriers to seeking care, enhancing access to and improving the quality of mental health care and support available to Service members, Veterans and their families, and support innovative research on mental health and substance use care and treatment for these target populations. To achieve these objectives, the Domestic Policy Council (DPC), the National Security Council (NSC), VA, DoD and HHS will lead and synchronize activities across the interagency to achieve the following:
- Reduce barriers: Reduce barriers for Service members, Veterans and their families to seeking mental health treatment and support by identifying, expanding, and promoting programs, initiatives, and efforts to reduce negative perceptions, increasing awareness of resources, identifying needs of military-connected families, and linking with community resources. Evaluate and improve VA and DoD public awareness campaigns to overcome negative perceptions and promote awareness; evaluate the quality and effectiveness of the Military OneSource platform/program and the Veteran and Military Crisis Lines and plan continued program improvements; continue to host VA Mental Health Summits to identify unmet needs of Veterans and Veterans’ families, and to identify and enhance understanding of community-based programs and services to support mental health needs of veterans and their families.
- Enhance access: Enhance Service member, Veteran and family access to mental health care and support by identifying, consolidating and building on successful DoD and VA programs and initiatives. Evaluate and improve existing VA-community collaboration pilot programs and promote expansion of formal arrangements and collaborations with community providers; expand telemental health care to meet demand and facilitate access to care; build on efforts to integrate mental health and substance use care into primary care programs; support an open source directory of vetted resources to aid community-based providers, Service members, Veterans and their families in identifying available resources; extend data sharing across DoD and VA health care locations to ensure that critical data in DoD and VA medical records are viewable by clinicians, health professionals and program administrators who require access to treat Service members, Veterans and their families.
- Support research: Identify and develop more effective diagnostic and treatment methodologies and metrics to improve mental health and substance use outcomes, including for traumatic brain injury (TBI), post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and related conditions. Fulfill commitments from the National Research Action Plan and chart next steps; continue development and testing of metrics proposed by the Interagency Task Force on Military and Veterans Mental Health and develop new metrics in the area of substance use disorders; evaluate the impact of ongoing DoD and VA research to improve diagnosis and treatment of TBI and PTSD and related conditions.
Members of the Interagency Taskforce on Military and Veterans Mental Health:
Department of Veterans Affairs
Department of Defense
Department of Health and Human Services
Domestic Policy Council
National Security Council
Office of National Drug Control Policy
Department of Education
Office of Management and Budget
Office of Science and Technology Policy