May 23rd, 2012  

Operation Helmet (An Ounce of Prevention Is Worth a Pound of Cure)
According to Dr. Robert Meaders (Doc Bob), founder of Operation Helmet, our troops are in unnecessary danger because the current government issued military helmet pads are too hard and cause severe headaches, which causes our troops on patrol or convoy to take their helmets off or release the chin straps to relieve the pain. As we all know, IEDs, RPGs, and ambushes pop up anytime and anywhere. When our troops REMOVE their helmets to relieve the pain so they can concentrate on staying alive and fighting the enemy, they have a MUCH HIGHER chance of suffering an injury or dying if they are attacked.

The remedy is not simple. We are probably not going to get the powers that be to say “yes" to upgraded helmet pads. Apparently, they like saying “no” when asked to buy better blast and impact protecting helmet pads. However, thanks to Doc Bob, we can give money to so that it can buy and send helmet pads to our combat troops operating in Afghanistan. According to Doc Bob, these helmet pads pass the same protective test and they comfortably conform to our warriors heads so their head armor is no longer a distraction.

Based on my research, as well as talking to Doc Bob (Jordan and I had lunch with him a couple of weeks ago), nobody in Operation Helmet takes any compensation. That is a far cry from many other so called charities' need to spend $91 in order to raise $100.

For those of you who have been a part of Stambush since 2006, you may remember me talking about it before. Back in 2006, Stambush contributed about $1000 to buy my old unit (1st Batallion 6th Marines Charlie Company third Platoon) upgraded helmet pads. I had hoped the issue would go away. After all, it was just the Marines at the time who had the crappy helmets.

Reluctantly, I decided to revisit this issue recently after sponsoring a CEU course on TBIs. I was hoping that the Marines had finally caught up to the Army, which was using good helmets in 2006. Unfortunately, it seems the ignorance of the Marines infected the Army, and now warriors of both branches are at higher risk of injury and death as a result. Apparently, the current helmet pads cost $10 less.

If you are not mad yet, keep reading. Doc Bob told me he was having a conversation with Army procurement officers, and he was explaining that one warrior with a TBI required an average of $2.7 Million for his/her lifetime care. That means spending an extra $10 for a better government issued helmet would be much better for our fighting men and women as well as our tax payers. Un-persuaded by Doc Bob’s logic, one of the officers said, “well yeah, but that comes out of the VA’s budget.”

Here is a quote directly from Doc Bob to you about the true cost:

"While the current GI helmet pads pass impact tests in the laboratory, they are so hard and non-conforming. Troops remove/loosen their helmet with a resulting increase in TBI. The current GI helmet pads were purchased to ‘save money’ by being fractionally less expensive than those the Army started with and Operation helmet now sends. However, that is false economy as the lifetime care of a brain injured veteran exceeds $2.7 million."

Now, to buy the upgraded helmet pads, the best America can produce, it costs $34 per helmet. But what are we as citizens supposed to do once we have this information? That is up to you all. I am not soliciting anybody to give me any money to send to, but Stambush Staffing will not only be sending more money, we will also be spreading the word to our customers.

Finally, when you think about it, the world seems to be infected with far too many people in power who like to say “no” to good things. They sit around saying “no” all day long, and they think they are actually working. Well they are not working. They are just being an a?? (two letters omitted because my Mumsy might be reading this).

Request from Laura Dowdy, OT
Our sister and OT extraordinaire, Laura Dowdy, sent us this message, and we felt like we should share it with you all:
"I was wondering if you could post this on the Stambush page or email to our employees.

Rowan was in a drowning accident, found underwater. He lives in my community. Initially he had only brain stem responses (pupil dilation, etc). He is now responding to pain and familiar voices. I believe in the power of prayer/positive vibes (whatever you choose to call it). There is power in numbers and this lil guy needs our help. This is what I posted on Facebook. Please encourage employees to post on the caring bridge guest page as the family relies on messages of support to carry them through. I know Stambush is comprised of amazing people with big hearts. Please pass this along however you feel is appropriate.

Thank You Kindly

Laura, I think I speak for all of Stambush when I say that our prayers/positive vibes are with Rowan and his family. May he have a speedy recovery.

Help Fellow PT With Dissertation Project?

I got an email from a PT the other day asking if any of you would be interested in helping her with her dissertation/project on Physical Activity Barriers Following Traumatic Brain Injury: A Cognitive Mapping Study. If any of you are interested, you can email me and I will send you the attachment she sent me. Or, if you know Anna De Joya, you can contact her yourself. Here is part of her email to me:

Dear Scott, I hope this email finds you well. We met at the Concussion course that I presented at in April at HCC. Thank you for attending! You were a great participant! I am sending you this email to see if the PTs in your team may be interested in my research/dissertation project. Please see the invitation below. Please let me know if this is something that might work. I am attaching the IRB approved information sheet as well for your reference. Feel free to send to your team as you feel appropriate. Please contact me if you have any questions. Thank you very much for your consideration.
Anna de Joya

(Anonymous) Quote of the Week

Here's an anonymous quote from a local PT talking about his/her boss. It may sound familiar:
“Some managers sit around saying “no” all day and they call that managing. That’s not managing. That’s just being an ass.”

The Straight Shooter

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