Navigation Links
Veterans who identify as LGB could benefit from informed mental health services
Date:6/26/2014

COLUMBIA, Mo. In 2011, the United States Military repealed its "don't ask, don't tell" policy that prevented gay and lesbian service members from disclosing their sexual orientation. Current estimates indicate that more than 1 million veterans identify as lesbian, gay or bisexual (LGB). Now, a University of Missouri researcher says these service members and veterans often are marginalized and may benefit from mental health professionals, including social workers, who are informed about the needs of individuals who identify as LGB.

"Identifying as LGB and serving in the military can provide a distinct set of experiences and challenges for individuals," said Michael Pelts, a doctoral student at the School of Social Work in the MU College of Human Environmental Sciences. "Within the U.S., identifying as a service member or veteran can marginalize individuals. This is also true for people who identify as LGB. The impact may be compounding. For example, suicide has a high occurrence rate among veterans and even more so among veterans who identify as LGB."

Pelts said studies show that the majority of LGB service members and veterans who seek mental health care services do so outside of Veterans Affairs.

"Social workers in the public and private sectors make up the largest group of mental health service providers to veterans and their families," Pelts said. "It is likely that social workers will continue to see current and new generations of veterans struggling with their sexual identity and with the impact of internal and societal stigmas related to identifying as LGB. Therefore, mental health professionals need to be equipped to care for members of this population."

Social workers and other mental health providers should challenge their cultural assumptions when treating clients who are veterans or service members, Pelts said.

"It's not ethically sound practice to assume that all service members and veterans are heterosexual," Pelts said. "Assuming individuals are heterosexual can compound stress for LGB individuals and make them less likely to share information, which can make it more difficult for health professionals and mental health providers to provide adequate care."

Pelts said health providers should adopt practices to be more inclusive to veterans who identify as LGB. Part of increasing inclusivity includes simple changes such as modifying medical history forms and in-take documents. By using more inclusive terminology, individuals who identify as LGB may feel less alienated, Pelts said.

"It is essential for mental health professionals to create culturally competent practice approaches," Pelts said. "Social workers have a tremendous opportunity, if not ethical responsibility, to be leaders in the provision of mental health services for LGB service members, veterans and their families."

Pelts recently wrote, "Veterans Mental Health: Implication for Services With Gay Men and Lesbians Who Have Served," which was published in Social Work in Mental Health.


'/>"/>

Contact: Jesslyn Chew
ChewJ@missouri.edu
573-882-8353
University of Missouri-Columbia
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Killing in war linked with suicidal thoughts among Vietnam veterans, study finds
2. Wartime Killing May Raise Veterans Thoughts of Suicide
3. Study identifies factors related to violence in veterans
4. Employment Key to Helping Veterans Adjust to Life Back Home
5. Duplicate spending on veterans care costs billions
6. Mesothelioma Victims Center Urges US Navy Veterans or Anyone with Mesothelioma to Call Them for the Names of the Best Mesothelioma Attorneys in the US-Quality Matters
7. Mesothelioma Victims Center Now Urges US Navy Veterans Or Individuals With Mesothelioma To Call Them For The Names Of The Best Mesothelioma Attorneys & Treatment Options
8. Improve Care for Veterans With PTSD: Report
9. Telephone therapy technique brings more Iraq and Afghanistan veterans into mental health treatment
10. Substance-use disorders linked to increased risk of death for veterans with PTSD
11. National nursing conference to address veterans health needs
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/24/2017)... ... May 24, 2017 , ... Adelberg-Montalvan Pediatric Dentistry ... for its patients on Long Island, New York. , Holistic dentistry puts ... is one of the biggest trends in dentistry today. , Dentist Dr. ...
(Date:5/24/2017)... Chicago, IL (PRWEB) , ... May 24, 2017 ... ... of the most prominent for-profit and nonprofit hospitals and health systems in the ... have turned around their institutions, led professional organizations and been instrumental in developing ...
(Date:5/24/2017)... ... May 24, 2017 , ... Technique, technique, technique – with ... either lifting weights for strength training and exercise or simply lifting heavy objects, advises ... “Body position is everything,” Dr. Chang says. “Improper technique in lifting anything heavy or ...
(Date:5/23/2017)... ... May 23, 2017 , ... MDLand International ... company, announced today that its iClinic V12.2 solution has achieved approval from National ... recently introduced PCMH 2017 standards which emphasize team-based care with a significant focus ...
(Date:5/23/2017)... ... May 23, 2017 , ... Allegheny Health Network and ... Joy D’Achille Center for Women’s Behavioral Health at West Penn Hospital , a ... for women suffering from pregnancy-related depression. Construction of the Center is underway with ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/10/2017)... 10, 2017 Radiology has become the number ... have also spiraled to the number one ranking as ... than ever before as the most complete and reliable ... with lower back pain an MRI may confirm a ... pain, resulting in entirely different treatment protocols.  In these ...
(Date:5/9/2017)... , May 9, 2017  Semler Scientific, Inc. ... technology solutions to improve the clinical effectiveness and ... for the first quarter ended March 31, 2017. ... enable our customers to identify when preventive care ... before events like heart attacks or strokes occur," ...
(Date:5/6/2017)... 5, 2017  Hill-Rom Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: HRC), has ... square feet to its Welch Allyn campus. ... to bring more than 100 new jobs to ... has maintained a significant presence for more than 100 ... positions, a large portion of which will be R&D ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: