Psychosocial concerns of veterans of operation enduring freedom/operation iraqi freedom

Jessica Strong, Kathleen Ray, Patricia A. Findley, Rita Torres, Lisa Pickett, Richard J. Byrne

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


U.S. veterans present with complex medical and psychosocial concerns postdeployment. Identification of psychosocial concerns is necessary for appropriate and targeted social work interventions to improve delivery and receipt of health care through the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. The purpose of this article is to identify specific psychosocial concerns of veterans of Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom (OIF/OEF) presenting at the War Related Illness and Injury Study Center. A retrospective chart review of psychosocial concerns from all OIF/OEF veterans seen from June 2008 to June 2010 provided data for this mixed methods study. Veterans in the sample (N = 356) reported an average of 5.2 psychosocial concerns (SD = 2.32, range = 0 to 11). The most commonly reported concerns were pain (72 percent), sleep (62 percent), cognition (61 percent), vocational issues (53 percent), education (49 percent), finances (42 percent), relationships (37 percent), anger (30 percent), substance abuse (23 percent), and social support (20 percent), though these categories were not exclusive and many veterans endorsed more than one category. Multiple psychosocial concerns reported by veterans suggest the need for targeted social work intervention.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)17-24
Number of pages8
JournalHealth and Social Work
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Health(social science)


  • mental health
  • psychosocial factors
  • social work
  • veterans


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