Lessons Learned in Afghanistan: A Multi-national Military Mental Health Perspective

  • Randall C. Nedegaard University of North Dakota
  • Rachel E. Foster United States Air Force
  • Mercy Yeboah-Ampadu Canadian Forces Health Service
  • Andrew J. Stubbs British Army
Keywords: Multi-national, military, mental health, deployment


America has been at war for almost 10 years. Because of this, continuing missions in the Middle East require the support and cooperation of our allied North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) forces from around the world. In this paper we provide an overview of the mission at Kandahar Air Field (KAF) and the Multi-National Role 3 hospital located at KAF. Next, we explain the mental health capabilities and unique perspectives among our teammates from Canada, Great Britain, and the United States to include a discussion of the relevant cross-cultural differences between us. Within this framework we also provide an overview of the mental health clientele seen at KAF during the period of April 2009 through September 2009. Finally, we discuss the successes, limitations, and lessons learned during our deployment to Kandahar, Afghanistan.

Author Biographies

Randall C. Nedegaard, University of North Dakota
Assistant Professor Department of Social Work University of North Dakota Lt Col (ret), US Air Force Clinical Social Worker and Clinical Psychologist
Rachel E. Foster, United States Air Force
Major, USAF Clinical Social Work Officer, Ph.D
Mercy Yeboah-Ampadu, Canadian Forces Health Service
Lieutenant Commander, Canadian Armed Forces Senior Social Work Officer, MSc.SS, RSW Stationed at Canadian Armed Forces Base Edmonton
Andrew J. Stubbs, British Army
Captain, British Army Mental Health Officer, RMN, Dip MH, BSc (Hons) 306 Hospital Support Medical Regiment