Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Clinical Outcomes Six Months After Receiving a PTSD Diagnosis in Veterans Health Administration

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Abstract

Because the mental health burden of PTSD among many racial and ethnic minority veterans is greater than among non-Latinx Whites (NLW) and there are disparities in VHA mental health treatment, we evaluated variations in clinical outcomes across veteran racial and ethnic groups in a large national cohort diagnosed with PTSD in VHA. This was a planned secondary analysis of patient-reported outcomes from a large prospective cohort study of veterans with PTSD. Veterans were surveyed immediately following a PTSD diagnosis and again 6 months later. Changes in PTSD symptoms and mental health quality of life were modeled using initial measures of these factors and demographic characteristics. Primary analyses modeled outcomes constructed from a sample restricted to veterans who initiated some mental health care in the6- month follow-up period (n = 2,992). Additionally, outcomes were modeled using the full cohort of treatment initiators and noninitiators (n = 5,070). Sensitivity and post hoc analyses were used to examine robustness of our findings and to facilitate interpretability. Disparities in PTSD and mental health quality of life outcomes were observed for some racial and ethnic minority groups of veterans. Although improvements in PTSD symptoms and mental health quality of life have been highly associated in other studies, in this sample these outcomes were interrelated in complex ways across groups.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalPsychological Services
Early online dateJul 13 2020
DOIs
StateE-pub ahead of print - Jul 13 2020

Keywords

  • Outcomes
  • PTSD
  • Posttraumatic stress disorder
  • Race disparities
  • Veterans

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article

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