2011 Annual Conference

"The Mind at War: Understanding,
Preparing, and Treating Combat Stress"

12-13 October 2011
Wu Conference Centre, 6 Duffie Drive,
UNB Fredericton

In the century since "shell shock" or "battle exhaustion" became common expressions through two world wars, military professionals and medical practitioners have gradually joined together to understand the problem of the human mind at war. The latest research into Operational Stress Injuries (OSIs) sheds much light on how the brain is affected by traumatic experience. This year's Gregg Centre-Combat Training Centre Annual Conference considers how western thinking about combat stress was shaped in the twentieth century and especially how it has evolved in this new century of military operations. The conference program goes beyond understanding the problem to consider methods of treatment and the latest ideas about preventing combat stress injuries through mental resiliency training.

This year's conference consists of a one-day symposium on 12 October, concluding with an evening public lecture. The second day, 13 October, consists of breakout workshops between teams of combat veterans, health care practitioners, clinicians, academics, and others interested in coming to grips with the challenge.

Public Keynote Lecture

Mental Health Care in The Canadian Forces

by Commodore H.W. Jung

Commodore H.W. Jung, OMM, CD, the Canadian Forces Surgeon General will deliver the keynote lecture for The Gregg Centre's Annual Fall Conference on 12 October 2011 at 7:00 p.m. at the Wu Conference Centre on the UNB Fredericton Campus.

Commodore Jung will speak about the current state of mental health care in the Canadian Forces. Although this is part of the conference program, this keynote address is open to the public.

Conference Program:

12 October 2011 - Day 1

7:50-8:20 a.m.   Registration

8:20-8:30 a.m.   Opening Remarks, Dr. Lee Windsor, LCol M.A. Lipcsey, and Colonel Dave Corbould, Commander, Combat Training Centre

8:30-10:20 a.m.  Panel 1: Understanding Combat Stress 

  • Lessons from History: Examining War Related Psychological Trauma in Two World Wars, Dr. Mark Humphries
  • From Combat Stress to Operational Stress: Canada's Lessons from the 'Decade of Darkness,' Professor Allen English
  • The Role of Sport Psychology in the Training of SOF Operators, Dr. John Dunn

10:20-10:40 a.m. Coffee Break

10:40-12:30 p.m. Panel 2: The Modern Face of Battle

  • An Infantry Platoon Leader's Perspective, Captain Ray Corby
  • A Medic's Perspective, Warrant Officer Steven Cooke
  • A Field Social Worker's Perspective, Captain Michelle McCashion

12:30-1:15 p.m.   Lunch

1:15-2:30 p.m.    Panel 3: Combat Stress Prevention 

  • Contemporary Canadian Forces Mental Resiliency Training, LCol Suzanne Bailey, LCol M.A. Lipcsey, Dr. Don McCreary (Chair)

2:30-2:50 p.m.    Coffee Break

2:50-4:40 p.m.    Panel 4: Treatment of Operational Stress Injuries (OSIs)

  • Multi-disciplinary Treatment of Combat Related PTSD - The Operational Trauma and Stress Support Centre Perspective, Major Paul Sedge
  • Battle on the Home Front: PTSD Medication Side Effects and the Quality of Life of Canadian Male Veterans, Debbie Bastien, RN, BScN MIDST(c)
  • The Paradoxes of Mental Resilience, Dr. Mark Zamorski

4:40-5:00 p.m.          Day 2 Panel Discussion Briefing and Closing Remarks

5:00-5:45 p.m.          Reception and Cash Bar

6:00-7:00 p.m.          Banquet

7:00-8:30 p.m.  Keynote Public Lecture

  • Commodore H.W. Jung, Commander of the Canadian Forces Health Services and Surgeon General on "Mental Health in the Canadian Forces."

The general public are welcome and encouraged to attend this keynote address.

13 October 2011 - Day 2

9:00-9:15 a.m.   Opening Remarks, Dr. Lee Windsor, LCol M.A. Lipcsey

9:15-12:00 p.m.  Syndicate Workshop

Participants will be divided into syndicates with a combination of operators, health professionals, and academics and will discuss and answer prepared questions. The group will present their findings in the afternoon program.

Syndicate 1: Learning about Combat Stress from the Past (Room 100A)

Syndicate 2: Management and Treatment of Stress on Operations (Room 209)

Syndicate 3: Enhancing Resilience and Coping Strategies (Room: Kent Auditorium)

Syndicate 4: Prevention or Mitigation? (Room: Aitken Room)

Syndicate 5: Treating OSIs/PTSD Post-deployment (Room 208)

Syndicate 6: Bridging the Gap Between Military Operators and Health Care Professionals: What Can They Learn From Each Other? (Room 210)

10:15-10:30 a.m.  Coffee Break

12:00-1:00 p.m.   Lunch

1:00-4:00 p.m.     Syndicate Presentations (30 minutes each)

Each of the five syndicates will present their findings and recommendations

4:00-4:30 p.m.    Closing Remarks