Improving PTSD/substance abuse treatment in the VA: a survey of providers

Am J Addict. 2010 May-Jun;19(3):257-63. doi: 10.1111/j.1521-0391.2010.00039.x.


We surveyed 205 Veterans Affairs (VA) staff on treatment of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), substance use disorder (SUD), and the combination (PTSD/SUD). The survey was anonymous and VA-wide. PTSD/SUD was perceived as more difficult to treat than either disorder alone; gratification in the work was stronger than difficulty (for PTSD, SUD, and PTSD/SUD); and difficulty and gratification appeared separate constructs. Respondents endorsed views that represent expert treatment for the comorbidity; however, there was also endorsement of "myths." Thus, there is a need for more training, policy clarifications, service integration, and adaptations for veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan. Limitations are described.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Attitude of Health Personnel*
  • Data Collection
  • Diagnosis, Dual (Psychiatry)
  • Humans
  • Quality of Health Care / statistics & numerical data*
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic / complications
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic / therapy*
  • Substance-Related Disorders / complications
  • Substance-Related Disorders / therapy*
  • United States
  • United States Department of Veterans Affairs*