Community Mental Health Journal

, Volume 43, Issue 1, pp 57–74 | Cite as

Disability Benefits and Clinical Outcomes among Homeless Veterans with Psychiatric and Substance Abuse Problems

  • Alvin S. Mares
  • Robert A. Rosenheck


This study examined the relationship between disability payment status and clinical outcomes among 305 homeless veterans entering VA treatment. Disability status and clinical outcomes were characterized using self-report data at program entry, and quarterly for 2 years thereafter. Seeking or already receiving disability benefits at program entry was not associated with any of the 8 clinical outcomes examined. Those seeking or receiving disability benefits during the 2 years that followed showed more serious mental health problems and lower levels of mental health functioning, but no greater risk of substance use or not being employed nor worse housing outcomes than those who remained uninterested in applying for disability benefits. This study does not, therefore, support the notion that disability orientation results in poorer clinical outcomes, at least not among homeless veterans.


disability mental illness homelessness veterans 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Northeast Program Evaluation Center (182), VA Connecticut Healthcare SystemWest HavenCTUSA
  2. 2.Department of PsychiatryYale University School of MedicineNew HavenUSA

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