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Why we should worry about malingering in the VA system: Comment on Jackson et al. (2011)



This article is corrected by:

  1. Errata: Erratum for “Why We Should Worry About Malingering in the VA System: Comment on Jackson et al. (2011)” Article first published online: 11 April 2017

  • We thank Bruce P. Dohrenwend for clarifying how his corroboration rate varies as a function of different sets of corroborators.


In a recent survey, Jackson et al. (2011) found that clinicians who evaluate veterans for service-connected disability pensions rarely use recommended best practices to assess for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) within the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). We share their dismay, and we hope that their article will help foster evidence-based assessments for diagnosing PTSD in veterans. Jackson et al. briefly discussed scholarship on malingering among applicants for service-connected disability compensation for PTSD, concluding that concerns about malingering are largely unfounded. The data they adduce, however, in support of this conclusion actually provide reasons for concern as we document in this article. We cite recent work by labor economists in support of our argument.