Dr. Emily Schmied, Assistant Professor at San Diego State University School of Public Health (Health Promotion & Behavioral Science), has been awarded $130,830 through Leidos, Inc., a large defense and biomedical research company. This non-traditional grant is a subcontract with Leidos that will permit Dr. Schmied to lead several existing research projects in conjunction with the Naval Health Research Center, which began in January 2021.
This body of work will improve understanding of risk factors for adverse behavioral health outcomes (e.g., suicidality) among military personnel, and may improve healthcare providers’ ability to deliver timely, high-quality care. The first study encompased in this award is an intervention study in which the researchers will determine the best method of delivering a suicide prevention training for mental health care providers. The second study is a large epidemiological investigation of risk factors for suicidality among military personnel who sustained serious limb injuries while in service. The third study is a surveillance study that will assess threats to the behavioral health of shipboard military personnel.
Dr. Schmied’s interest in the behavioral health of active duty military personnel and their families stems from her upbringing in a military family – as her father served in the military for over 20 years. Dr. Schmied recognizes that while there are effective mental health treatments available, stigma surrounding mental health, as well as other social and structural barriers, often impede care-seeking, which causes millions of people to suffer needlessly. With mental health issues being the leading cause of disability in the U.S., Dr. Schmied believes that further research into effective interventions may have profound and far-reaching effects on our society.