Military Psychiatry

Soldiers taking survey

WRAIR's Military Psychiatry branch develops evidence-based knowledge products and interventions to optimize the readiness and resilience of Soldiers across the deployment cycle. In order to maintain an effective and lethal fighting force, Soldiers must be properly equipped to confront the psychological demands of military service and warfare. Psychiatric disorders amongst Soldiers are the leading cause of hospital bed days and the second leading cause of medical encounters, marking them as a significant threat to Soldier welfare and readiness.

Members of WRAIR's Military Psychiatry branch have surveyed deployed units around the world to document the prevalence of emerging and existing behavioral health concerns, and to identify related risk factors. These data are used to inform Commanders' decision-making about behavioral health and other resources, and Military Psychiatry's neurocognitive intervention development efforts and behavioral health policy recommendations.

Research Areas

Soldiers being briefed
Behavioral Health Threats

Military Psychiatry scientists develop and implement tools like the BH Pulse to monitor the prevalence of behavioral health concerns and to identify emerging threats to Soldier behavioral health.

Soldier counseling Soldier
Developing Interventions

Military Psychiatry staff work to understand the neurocognitive underpinnings of stress-related symptoms and develop effective, validated techniques to improve occupational and behavioral health outcomes for Soldiers. These techniques are both for behavioral healthcare providers as well as mobile cognitive tools, available to Soldiers wherever they are.

teaching best practices in psychiatry
Clinical Service Optimization

Military Psychiatry researchers and scientists work within the Army Behavioral Health System to improve access, retention, and quality of psychiatric care offered to Soldiers. These trainings, programs, and tools result both in improved outcomes for Soldiers and more accurate readiness decisions from care providers.