Supporting Military Families
“These are men and women who have taken great risks and made huge sacrifices to defend our country. They have left their families, traveled to far-off lands, and put their lives on the line to protect ours. As President Obama has said many times, taking care of our troops and their families is one of our country’s most sacred responsibilities.” – Secretary Kathleen Sebelius
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is the United States government’s principal agency for protecting the health of all Americans and providing essential human services. HHS and its operating divisions offer a variety of resources and programs specifically designed to support military families.
HHS Resources for Military Families and Those That Help Them
We Can’t Wait: Supporting Our Veterans (White House)
The President has challenged Community Health Centers to hire 8,000 Veterans over the next 3 years, and Physician Assistant training programs will now be easier for Veterans to access.
- Veteran Employment Program Offices (FEDShireVETS)
Find a list of Federal agencies and their Veteran employment program contacts.
- Special Appointing Authorities for Veterans (FEDShireVETS): Find guidelines for Special Hiring Authorities for Veterans.
- HHS Careers Help Desk Contacts: If you have issues related to a specific vacancy announcement, or you have trouble logging into HHS Careers please contact the individuals listed in the vacancy announcement or the appropriate helpdesk listed on the Help Desk Contacts page for assistance.
- MedlinePlus for Veterans and Military Health: This NIH website serves as a resource center for veterans seeking information on health issues suffered as a result of wartime. Also, see Veterans and Military Health.
- Find Federally Qualified Health Centers available in most cities and many rural areas. HHS’s Health Resources and Services Administration funds health centers that deliver comprehensive, high-quality preventive and primary health care, which may include, oral health, behavioral health and substance abuse services, to patients regardless of their insurance status or ability to pay.
- How to Help Veterans & Their Families (HRSA) Learn how you can help Veterans locate community health care facilities.
- Veterans’ Health Activies (CDC) Find information on Vietnam and Gulf War health-related studies.
- Women Veterans with Disabilities (WomensHealth.gov) Find information and resources for women Veterans with special needs.
Substance Abuse and Mental Health:
- Military Families Page: This page is designed to help military families and veterans deal with behavioral health issues associated with military service. SAMHSA offers support through technical assistance for state, territory and tribal behavioral health systems serving service members, veterans and their families.
- Veteran Crisis Line: Veterans in emotional crisis have free, 24/7 access to trained counselors. Veterans can call the Lifeline number, 1-800-273- TALK (8255), and press “1” to be routed to the veterans Suicide Prevention Hotline.
- Women Veterans and Mental Health (WomensHealth.gov): Find information and resources on the special mental health needs of women Veterans.
- HealthFinder.gov for Veterans and Military Health: This page includes A to Z searchable information from Suicide Prevention to Frequently Asked Questions about PTSD.
- Help for Service Members, Veterans and Their Families: Current and former service members may face different mental health issues than the general public.
- Achieving New Mental Health Treatment Goals for Veterans, Servicemembers and their Families: See recent blog posts about cross agency initiatives to improve access and invest in research to improve the science and understanding of mental health care and treatment for Veterans, service members and their families.
- Rural Assistance Center: The Rural Assistance Center helps rural communities and other rural stakeholders access the full range of available health and human services programs, funding, and research. The website includes a “Returning Soldier and Veteran Health” section with a Frequently Asked Questions segment that is very informative.
Children and Families:
- National Child Traumatic Stress Network: This network was established to improve access to care, treatment, and service for traumatized children and adolescents exposed to traumatic events. It includes the Military Family Resource Area and Knowledge Bank, an online database of resources that provides access to information for military family members, mental health and medical providers, educators and others on the stressors facing military families and children.
- Adoption for Military Families: The Administration for Children and Families Child Welfare Information Gateway addresses common questions about adoption of children by military personnel and their families. Here you will find such resources as a listing of adoption agencies able to place with U.S. citizens living abroad, information on the adoption reimbursement program for active duty members of the military services, and a bulletin that explains the benefits of using military families as adoptive resources for children.
- Native American Veterans: Storytelling for Healing (ACF) Order a DVD which provides resources to help heal and contribute to the wellness of native communities.
- Child Support Enforcement for the Military and Veterans The child support program touches the lives of many military and veteran families as we work to ensure that children can count on reliable support from their parents. Military families face unique challenges because of deployments or other lengthy separations. State child support programs are intervening earlier and responding more quickly to the changing circumstances of both parents so that support orders remain reasonable and fair.