Arlington, VA Monday, October 26, 2020
The American College of Hyperbaric Medicine (ACHM) today awarded their 2020 ACHM Ken Locklear Visionary Award to Robert L. Beckman, PhD, of the TreatNOW Coalition. The award reads: “you have distinguished yourself by exhibiting dedication and passion to the field of hyperbaric medicine.” In his remarks to the virtual assembly, Dr. Beckman emphasized a cardinal rule of ending epidemics: early detection, early response. Yet after over eighteen years of war, and increasing levels of suicide among service members and veterans, neither the Veterans Administration nor the Department of Defense seems able to understand “early response” in the context of treating and healing brain wounds.
The suicide epidemic afflicting the US has seen dramatic and lethal increases in deaths to Special Operators, first responders, women soldiers, and veterans. Along with Functional Medicine practitioners, Dr. Beckman and TreatNOW seek to demand proper diagnosis and treatment of physical injuries to the brain that too often precede suicide. It is true as well for athletes and citizens alike.
Brain injuries are wounds, wounds that can be treated and helped to heal with hyperbaric oxygenation. Dr. Beckman encouraged the ACHM to continue to build collaborative coalitions in the medical field to break the bureaucratic cycle of “deny, delay, deceive, drugs, depression, and death” that too often precedes self-extinction. COVID has intensified depression in brain-wounded veterans, leading to a higher percentage of veterans taking their own lives, in excess of 20 per day – tens of thousands of post-9/11 soldier suicides while the VA and DoD continue with organizational and behavioral strategies to prescribe drugs and talk the wounded out of their physical injuries. A current National Strategy is “If You See Something, Say Something,” as though patients are packages that can be defused and trained to live with their “new normal.”
In 2012 the Visionary Award was posthumously presented to Ken Locklear as a leader and true visionary in the field of hyperbaric medicine. The ACHM has served as a primary educational resource for providers practicing hyperbaric and wound medicine and has established training criteria and certification pathways for clinicians. They are especially attuned to the importance of therapeutic oxygen in clinical applications, especially wound management. Thus, the marriage between their purpose and the work of the awardee fits the current epidemic of suicide.
For over a decade, Dr. Beckman, a former Vietnam era Air Force pilot, and numerous other veterans have worked pro bono to end the decades-old service-member suicide epidemic. The TreatNOW Coalition is changing the way medicine fails to deal with brain wounds caused by hits to the head from war, sports, falls, accidents, and assaults. TreatNOW takes the stance, backed by conclusive peer-reviewed scientific research and over 7,500 clinical successes, that hyperbaric oxygenation prevents suicides and restores quality of life. Patients also get off their drugs and begin to heal brain wounds that are never addressed using conventional standards of care for Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), and Concussions.
Congress and seven state governments (OK, TX, IN, KY, AZ, FL, and NC) agree that HBOT research and treatment should be provided to service members who may never have heard that they have a brain wound, much less that a safe and effective treatment exists. Dr. Beckman drew attention to the Commander John Scott Hannon Veterans Mental Health Care Improvement Act that encourages the Veterans Administration to expand their research into the use of HBOT.
The ACHM furthers visionary and transformative medicine in its continuing work on the HBOT Mechanisms of Action relative to anti-inflammation and healing soft tissue injuries to the brain. As part of the TreatNOW and ACHM efforts, groups like America’s Mighty Warriors, the Professional Football Retired Players Association, Stand for the Troops, Healing Heroes, the Hyperbaric Health and Wellness Foundation, the Marine Corps League, and the Help Our Wounded Foundation have lent support to Senators Hoeven and Cramer of North Dakota in bi-partisan efforts to advance the acceptance of Hyperbaric Oxygenation for all Americans with brain wounds.
The information provided by TreatNOW.org does not constitute a medical recommendation. It is intended for informational purposes only, and no claims, either real or implied, are being made.