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 In 2011, the United States Military repealed its "don't ask, don't tell" policy that prevented gay and lesbian service members from disclosing their sexual orientation.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:4/25/2017)... ... April 25, 2017 , ... A stressful work environment ... can also decrease overall productivity and performance in the workplace. The goal of Clearview ... the last few weeks of April, Clearview Resolution Services will be shutting down the ...
(Date:4/25/2017)... ... April 25, 2017 , ... A ... student test score performance for the 2015-16 school year across Wisconsin’s public schools, ... Though it highlights important patterns in student test score performance, the report’s limited ...
(Date:4/25/2017)... ... April 25, 2017 , ... Lake Park Dental is ... using Invisalign® in Lutz, FL. With the help of this highly-effective, yet ... with fewer potential complications, more discretion and less pain. , Drs. Sarah Jockin, ...
(Date:4/25/2017)... ... April 25, 2017 , ... As pharmaceutical companies are held ... with process innovation in drug formulation and manufacturing. CoreRx offers its clients ... equipment in support of their development and manufacturing goals. , The company ...
(Date:4/25/2017)... ... , ... Back Pain Centers of America (BPC), which connects people ... their area, announces the launch of a new and proprietary customer relationship management (CRM) ... reputable physicians to help them with back or neck pain and helps to match ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:4/24/2017)... April 24, 2017 Solentim, the developer ... the addition of a major new product line ... Seeding,). The VIPS has been developed for automatically ... microplates as part of the process to generate ... simple and more reliable solution when compared to ...
(Date:4/20/2017)... 20, 2017  Vivify Health, the pioneer and market ... awarded a very significant patent for the advancement of ... care via digital health.  This landmark patent provides the ... further secures Vivify,s position as the leader in remote ... the first company to apply consumer mobile devices, wireless ...
(Date:4/20/2017)... MARLBOROUGH, Mass. , April 20, 2017 /PRNewswire/ ... company developing innovative therapeutics that address significant unmet ... new data from the Company,s consumer product development ... technology, at the Society for Investigative Dermatology (SID) ... is to advance and promote the sciences relevant ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: