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Abstract

This study examines predictors of current mental health service use in a sample of 154 veterans filing claims for Veterans Affairs (VA) disability benefits based on Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Our conceptual framework was the behavioral model that classifies predictors of service utilization into predisposing (background), enabling (e.g., insurance) and need (e.g., symptoms) factors. Slightly more than half of the PTSD claimants were receiving mental health treatment at the time of claim initiation. Mean symptom levels were clinically significant in both users and nonusers of mental health treatment. In a multivariate logistic regression analysis, mental health treatment use was associated with younger age, marriage, and dependence on public insurance. Implications for future research are discussed.