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Member Testimonial: Steadying After Service, A Veteran's Journey With Oqea

Member Testimonial: Steadying After Service, A Veteran's Journey With Oqea

Written by Harry Sankey Jan 13, 2022

James a 30-year-old ex-specialist from the Royal Australian Navy shared his confronting yet inspiring story of service and the impactful role Oqea has played in his journey.

Throughout his 12 years of service, James experienced an incredibly high number of traumatic events that likely, would greatly exceed the number many of us would ever experience in a lifetime. From warfare with foreign naval fleets to equipment failure with critical consequences, and every dire circumstance in between. It became evident that these traumatic events were amplified by a lack of support and the stigma surrounding speaking up. Ultimately, this all compounded to James suffering from anxiety, PTSD & depression.

“It was early February 2021, when Dr Richard Magtengaard got me on Oqea. It offered me a means of communication as of course I can’t be in his office every day”

James outlined that this communication was invaluable to him, he was informed of activities and opportunities he could get involved with, he was able to discuss his prescribed medications, dosages and side-effects experienced and come to better alternatives without booking an in-person consult.

Additionally, James mentioned that he was able to easily speak with Richard’s practice manager Tatianna through the app to organise medical certificates and other documentation he required to navigate the Department of Veteran Affairs [DVA] system “DVA is very complex, I need Doctor certificates and a million things, I spoke to Tatianna through the app, and she could get everything ready and signed by him [Richard] quickly, everything I needed. You know how busy he is and how many things he would have to do- it would normally take ages.”

Lastly, James spoke of Richards support through

“a huge meltdown…4-5 of the worst days of my life. I was at the absolute mercy of his guidance, and that was all through the app; it is, and he is, pretty much why I am alive”.

These words speak volumes of Dr Magtengaard and emphasise the importance of all professionals working in this space.

We chatted with James about his thoughts on the collaborative nature of Oqea,

“I have spoken with 6 or 7 medical or allied health practitioners in the last 2 weeks, it would make my life so much easier if I could have all my providers working together.”

 Simply having all his providers be on the same page, let alone collaborate for an enhanced level of support was an exciting prospect for James.

In addition, the ability to grant new providers access to past information implied significant benefits for veterans, James went on to mention that “It is very frustrating repeating the same story 15 times to different providers, they are traumatic events, and it often causes an immense amount of anxiety to mentally relive those experiences”.

It is no secret that veterans have been exposed to all manner of traumatic events, but as mentioned earlier this can be heavily amplified through the stigma and a lack of support.  James was medically downgraded when receiving support in early 2021 and medically discharged later the same year. It was saddening when James, in reference to talking to the specialists provided by the defence force stated “If I tell you what is on my mind, I am ultimately sacking myself, and I did and then I was done. We know what PTSD is and what anxiety is, but we couldn’t admit it”.  For further clarification, James mentioned “If your mental health issues are not resolved in 3-4 sessions you will likely get medically downgraded, and you won’t be fit for sea if you are downgraded. It is automatically a 12-month downgrade if you get prescribed any medication to assist”.

Oqea believes everyone, everywhere deserves to have easy access to the people and resources they need to feel supported. We aim to provide a place of connection free of geographical barriers that allow individuals to express themselves and feel supported through whatever they may be facing.

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Member Testimonial: Steadying After Service, A Veteran's Journey With Oqea

James a 30-year-old ex-specialist from the Royal Australian Navy shared his confronting yet inspiring story of service and the impactful role Oqea has played in his journey.

Throughout his 12 years of service, James experienced an incredibly high number of traumatic events that likely, would greatly exceed the number many of us would ever experience in a lifetime. From warfare with foreign naval fleets to equipment failure with critical consequences, and every dire circumstance in between. It became evident that these traumatic events were amplified by a lack of support and the stigma surrounding speaking up. Ultimately, this all compounded to James suffering from anxiety, PTSD & depression.

“It was early February 2021, when Dr Richard Magtengaard got me on Oqea. It offered me a means of communication as of course I can’t be in his office every day”

James outlined that this communication was invaluable to him, he was informed of activities and opportunities he could get involved with, he was able to discuss his prescribed medications, dosages and side-effects experienced and come to better alternatives without booking an in-person consult.

Additionally, James mentioned that he was able to easily speak with Richard’s practice manager Tatianna through the app to organise medical certificates and other documentation he required to navigate the Department of Veteran Affairs [DVA] system “DVA is very complex, I need Doctor certificates and a million things, I spoke to Tatianna through the app, and she could get everything ready and signed by him [Richard] quickly, everything I needed. You know how busy he is and how many things he would have to do- it would normally take ages.”

Lastly, James spoke of Richards support through

“a huge meltdown…4-5 of the worst days of my life. I was at the absolute mercy of his guidance, and that was all through the app; it is, and he is, pretty much why I am alive”.

These words speak volumes of Dr Magtengaard and emphasise the importance of all professionals working in this space.

We chatted with James about his thoughts on the collaborative nature of Oqea,

“I have spoken with 6 or 7 medical or allied health practitioners in the last 2 weeks, it would make my life so much easier if I could have all my providers working together.”

 Simply having all his providers be on the same page, let alone collaborate for an enhanced level of support was an exciting prospect for James.

In addition, the ability to grant new providers access to past information implied significant benefits for veterans, James went on to mention that “It is very frustrating repeating the same story 15 times to different providers, they are traumatic events, and it often causes an immense amount of anxiety to mentally relive those experiences”.

It is no secret that veterans have been exposed to all manner of traumatic events, but as mentioned earlier this can be heavily amplified through the stigma and a lack of support.  James was medically downgraded when receiving support in early 2021 and medically discharged later the same year. It was saddening when James, in reference to talking to the specialists provided by the defence force stated “If I tell you what is on my mind, I am ultimately sacking myself, and I did and then I was done. We know what PTSD is and what anxiety is, but we couldn’t admit it”.  For further clarification, James mentioned “If your mental health issues are not resolved in 3-4 sessions you will likely get medically downgraded, and you won’t be fit for sea if you are downgraded. It is automatically a 12-month downgrade if you get prescribed any medication to assist”.

Oqea believes everyone, everywhere deserves to have easy access to the people and resources they need to feel supported. We aim to provide a place of connection free of geographical barriers that allow individuals to express themselves and feel supported through whatever they may be facing.