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Racial disparities in VA service connection for posttraumatic stress disorder disability.
Med Care. 2003 Apr; 41(4):536-49.MC

Abstract

BACKGROUND

"Service connected" veterans are those with documented, compensative conditions related to or aggravated by military service, and they receive priority for enrollment into the Veterans Affairs (VA) health care system. For some veterans, service connection represents the difference between access to VA health care facilities and no access.

OBJECTIVES

To determine whether there are racial discrepancies in the granting of service connection for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) by the Department of Veterans Affairs and, if so, to determine whether these discrepancies could be attributed to appropriate subject characteristics, such as differences in PTSD symptom severity or functional status.

RESEARCH DESIGN

Mailed survey linked to administrative data. Claims audits were conducted on 11% of the sample.

SETTING AND SUBJECTS

The study comprised 2700 men and 2700 women randomly selected from all veterans filing PTSD disability claims between January 1, 1994 and December 31, 1998.

RESULTS

A total of 3337 veterans returned usable surveys, of which 17% were black. Only 16% of respondents carried private health insurance, and 44% reported incomes of 20,000 US dollars or less. After adjusting for respondents' sociodemographic characteristics, symptom severity, functional status, and trauma histories, black persons' rate of service connection for PTSD was 43% compared with 56% for other respondents (P = 0.003).

CONCLUSION

Black persons' rates of service connection for PTSD were substantially lower than other veterans even after adjusting for differences in PTSD severity and functional status.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Center for Chronic Disease Outcomes Research, Minneapolis VA Medical Center, Minnesota 55417, USA. murdo002@tc.umn.eduNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

Language

eng

PubMed ID

12665717

Citation

Murdoch, Maureen, et al. "Racial Disparities in VA Service Connection for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Disability." Medical Care, vol. 41, no. 4, 2003, pp. 536-49.
Murdoch M, Hodges J, Cowper D, et al. Racial disparities in VA service connection for posttraumatic stress disorder disability. Med Care. 2003;41(4):536-49.
Murdoch, M., Hodges, J., Cowper, D., Fortier, L., & van Ryn, M. (2003). Racial disparities in VA service connection for posttraumatic stress disorder disability. Medical Care, 41(4), 536-49.
Murdoch M, et al. Racial Disparities in VA Service Connection for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Disability. Med Care. 2003;41(4):536-49. PubMed PMID: 12665717.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Racial disparities in VA service connection for posttraumatic stress disorder disability. AU - Murdoch,Maureen, AU - Hodges,James, AU - Cowper,Diane, AU - Fortier,Larry, AU - van Ryn,Michelle, PY - 2003/4/1/pubmed PY - 2003/4/19/medline PY - 2003/4/1/entrez SP - 536 EP - 49 JF - Medical care JO - Med Care VL - 41 IS - 4 N2 - BACKGROUND: "Service connected" veterans are those with documented, compensative conditions related to or aggravated by military service, and they receive priority for enrollment into the Veterans Affairs (VA) health care system. For some veterans, service connection represents the difference between access to VA health care facilities and no access. OBJECTIVES: To determine whether there are racial discrepancies in the granting of service connection for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) by the Department of Veterans Affairs and, if so, to determine whether these discrepancies could be attributed to appropriate subject characteristics, such as differences in PTSD symptom severity or functional status. RESEARCH DESIGN: Mailed survey linked to administrative data. Claims audits were conducted on 11% of the sample. SETTING AND SUBJECTS: The study comprised 2700 men and 2700 women randomly selected from all veterans filing PTSD disability claims between January 1, 1994 and December 31, 1998. RESULTS: A total of 3337 veterans returned usable surveys, of which 17% were black. Only 16% of respondents carried private health insurance, and 44% reported incomes of 20,000 US dollars or less. After adjusting for respondents' sociodemographic characteristics, symptom severity, functional status, and trauma histories, black persons' rate of service connection for PTSD was 43% compared with 56% for other respondents (P = 0.003). CONCLUSION: Black persons' rates of service connection for PTSD were substantially lower than other veterans even after adjusting for differences in PTSD severity and functional status. SN - 0025-7079 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/12665717/Racial_disparities_in_VA_service_connection_for_posttraumatic_stress_disorder_disability_ L2 - https://doi.org/10.1097/01.MLR.0000053232.67079.A5 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -