Article

Fleet leaders' attitudes about subordinates' use of mental health services.

Nursing Research Service, Naval Medical Center, 620 John Paul Jones Circle, Portsmouth, VA 23708, USA.
Military medicine (Impact Factor: 0.77). 12/2007; 172(11):1138-43.
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Mental disorders are a significant source of medical and occupational morbidity for sailors. Stigma, fear of negative career impact, and subordinates concern about leaders' attitudes are significant barriers to the use of mental health services. Semistructured interviews and military policies were data sources used to analyze the language, knowledge, and attitudes of Navy surface fleet leaders about mental illness and mental health treatment using Foucault's concept of discourse analysis. A discourse is a system of knowledge that influences language, perceptions, values, and social practices. The results showed that leaders' concerns about sailors' mental combat readiness, not mental illness stigma, was the dominant discourse about mental illness and mental health services use. In particular, organizational differences between the surface warfare and the mental health communities may influence leaders' attitudes more than stigma. This study provides an elaborated view of mental health knowledge and power within a Navy community.

1 Follower
 · 
79 Views
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: This research developed and tested the Military Stigma Scale (MSS), a 26-item scale, designed to measure public and self-stigma, two theorized core components of mental health stigma. The sample comprised 1,038 active duty soldiers recruited from a large Army installation. Soldiers' mean age was 26.7 (standard deviation = 5.9) years, and 93.6% were male. The sample was randomly split into a scale development group (n = 520) and a confirmatory group (n = 518). Factor analysis conducted with the scale development group resulted in the adoption of two factors, named public and self-stigma, accounting for 52.1% of the variance. Confirmatory factor analysis conducted with the confirmatory group indicated good fit for the two-factor model. Both factors were components of a higher order stigma factor. The public and self-stigma scales for the exploratory and confirmatory groups demonstrated good internal consistency (α = .94 and .89; α = .95 and .87, respectively). Demographic differences in stigma were consistent with theory and previous empirical research: Soldiers who had seen a mental health provider scored lower in self-stigma than those who had not. The MSS comprises two internally consistent dimensions that appear to capture the constructs of public and self-stigma. The overall results indicate that public and self-stigma are dimensions of stigma that are relevant to active duty soldiers and suggest the need to assess these dimensions in future military stigma research.
    Journal of Clinical Psychology 09/2012; 68(9):1036-47. DOI:10.1002/jclp.21889 · 2.12 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: OBJECTIVE This study analyzed data from a national survey of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans to improve understanding of mental health services use and perceived barriers. METHODS The National Post-Deployment Adjustment Survey randomly sampled post-9/11 veterans separated from active duty or in the Reserves or National Guard. The corrected response rate was 56% (N=1,388). RESULTS Forty-three percent screened positive for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), major depression, or alcohol misuse. Past-year psychiatric treatment was reported by 69% of the PTSD group, 67% of the depression group, and 45% of those with alcohol misuse. Most received care at Veterans Affairs (VA) facilities, although women were more likely than men to seek non-VA services. Veterans with more severe symptoms reported greater treatment utilization. Eighteen percent saw a pastoral counselor (chaplain) in the past year. Veterans with mental health needs who did not access treatment were more likely to believe that they had to solve problems themselves and that medications would not help. Those who had accessed treatment were more likely to express concern about being seen as weak by others. CONCLUSIONS Veterans in greatest need were more likely to access services. More than two-thirds with probable PTSD obtained past-year treatment, mostly at VA facilities. Treatment for veterans may be improved by increasing awareness of gender differences, integrating mental health and pastoral services, and recognizing that alcohol misuse may reduce utilization. Veterans who had and had not used services endorsed different perceptions about treatment, indicating that barriers to accessing care may be distinct from barriers to engaging in care.
    Psychiatric services (Washington, D.C.) 02/2013; 64(2):134-41. DOI:10.1176/appi.ps.004792011 · 1.99 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: OBJECTIVE: To conduct a blinded study to examine the diagnostic efficiency of the Department of Defense (DoD) Post-Deployment Health Reassessment (PDHRA) screens for major depressive disorder (MDD), posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and alcohol abuse. METHOD: Participants were 148 post-deployed soldiers who were completing the PDHRA protocol. Soldiers' mean age was 27.7 (standard deviation = 6.6) years, and 89.0% were male. Mental health professionals blinded to the PDHRA screening results administered the Structured Clinical Interview for the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition directly after the PDHRA assessment protocol. RESULTS: All screens exhibited excellent negative predictive power. Sensitivity metrics were lower, consistent with the relatively low base rates observed for MDD (10.1%), PTSD (8.8%), and alcohol abuse (5.4%). Metrics obtained for the PTSD screen were consistent with previous research with a similar base rate. A two-item screen containing PTSD reexperiencing and hyperarousal symptom items revealed excellent psychometric properties (sensitivity = .92; specificity = .79). The alcohol abuse screen yielded high sensitivity (.86), but very poor precision; these metrics were somewhat improved when the screen was reduced to a single item. CONCLUSIONS: The PDHRA MDD, PTSD, and alcohol abuse screens appear to be functioning well in accurately ruling out these diagnoses, consistent with a population-level screening program. Cross validation of the current results is indicated. Additional refinement may yield more sensitive screening measures within constraints imposed by the low base rates in a typically healthy population.
    Journal of Clinical Psychology 12/2012; 68(12). DOI:10.1002/jclp.21887 · 2.12 Impact Factor