“War Head: Survivorship and Coping with the Psychological Toll of War; Lessons Learned from operation Iraqi Freedom ”
a presentation by
Colonel Kathy Platoni, Psy.D.
United States Army and Army Reserves
Thursday, April 26, 2007
4:00 – 5:30 pm
Class of ’62 Auditorium
University of Rochester Medical Center
Colonel Kathy Platoni, with 27 years of both active and Army Reserve experience, will speak about her experiences treating soldiers with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) during active combat in Iraq. She was deployed to Ramadi, “the seat of the insurgency,” and lived in close quarters with our soldiers, enduring constant mortar, IED, and insurgent attacks. She was able to treat, on site, those who were experiencing unimaginable levels of stress and violence. Carrying her body weight in armor and weapons, she was one of the very few combat stress specialists to venture “beyond the wire.” As such, she earned both the respect and the trust of those she served.
In her own words: “There is a war in my own head. Those of us who served have set foot into rooms from which we may never leave. Unless one has lived and breathed the enormity of such life-altering experiences, one cannot truly appreciate the darkness, the crushing defeat of lost comrades, and what one must conquer within the deepest recesses of the psyche to pass through to enlightenment and wisdom. “
Since returning, Col. Platoni has been a vocal critic of the Army's treatment of soldiers with PTSD, and she has been widely quoted in national publications.
Col. Platoni has been a practicing clinical psychologist for 25 years. She maintained her private practice in Centerville, Ohio, until the time of her third deployment to active duty. She has now resumed her practice, and writes and lectures on the treatment of combat stress in war zones.
This event is free and open to the public.