A federal university is asking veterans in the metropolitan areas of Washington, D.C., San Antonio, Texas, and Chapel Hill, N.C., to participate in a new research study evaluating the impact of combat injuries on all members of a family.
Conducted by the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, the study – Families OverComing Under Stress: Combat Injury (FOCUS-CI) – will shed light on the recovery of veterans with combat injuries and how they and their families may best be helped over time. The study also will help researchers evaluate whether a new program created by the university will strengthen families and help them learn new skills to deal with the daily challenges they face.
To qualify for the study, service members and veterans must have had a combat injury in the past five years, and either they or their spouse must care for at least one child younger than 18 years of age.
The study will be implemented in the surrounding metropolitan areas of Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Md., San Antonio Military Medical Center and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Families participating in the study will be interviewed four times over a two-year period on topics such as injury, treatment and adjustments; how family members are thinking, feeling and getting along; and parental relationships with children.
Participating families will receive several benefits, including connection to local military and community-based resources, access to an extensive website with more resources and informational fact sheets, access to an extensive interactive gaming website and participation in skill-building sessions focused on problem-solving, goal setting and family communication. Participants also may be compensated in the form of a Visa gift card.
If you are a service member or veteran or partner of a service member or veteran and are interested in participating in FOCUS-CI, click here to see if you qualify. If you have any questions, please contact info@CIfamilies.org.
Brittany Ballenstedt is a freelance journalist whose work has appeared in several publications, including Government Executive, National Journal, Technology Daily and NextGov.com.