USAF Updates Mental Health Rules

New policy intended to expedite the treatment of airmen and prioritize their well-being.

The U.S. Air Force has revised its mental health protocols, allowing airmen to pursue treatment for up to 60 days before needing a return-to-duty waiver to resume flying. This change, which eliminates the previous mandatory stabilization period, is intended to reduce the time airmen are grounded after seeking assistance and a potential diagnosis. By providing a clearer timeline for airmen to return to flight duty, the service branch is encouraging individuals to seek help without the fear of negatively impacting their training certifications and career prospects.

“The trauma care I went through was life-changing,” Major Jane Marlow, a C-130J Super Hercules airlifter, stated. “I knew that I was, without a doubt, a safer pilot, a better leader, and a stronger wingman because of the care I received—yet I was still required to spend months in a non-flying status because of my diagnosis.”

These updates are the result of efforts from the Air Mobility Command’s “Warrior Mental Health” working group, comprised of aircrew members, aviation psychologists, flight surgeons, and a specialized doctor from NASA. Flight surgeons can now submit waivers for airmen to resume flying after the 60-day treatment period, reflecting a shift toward early treatment and resilience development as the understanding of stress responses expands.

As the Lord Leads, Pray with Us…

  • For Secretary Frank Kendall to receive God’s guidance as he heads the U.S. Air Force.
  • For discernment for Secretary Lloyd Austin as he oversees the Department of Defense and its mental health policies.

Sources: Military Times,


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