Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is generally considered the signature wound of the last several years of warfare. However, PTSD has only been an official diagnosis since the 1980’s, and even today many veterans suffering from PTSD have a difficult time proving that they’re coping with this disorder.
That’s why NASW is so pleased to see the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) refine their definition of Stressor Determinations for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. (The full entry in the Federal Register is available here, and the VA’s FAQ sheet on this change can be found here.) This change should help veterans, as well as the social workers and other care providers working with them, establish when PTSD is present.
While the treatment of PTSD remains challenging and elusive for many veterans, the VA’s decision to lessen the requirements of proving Post Traumatic Stress will help veterans seeking proper treatment of this disorder. We urge NASW members to note not only the large-scale implications of this regulatory change, but also the specific mention of social work and social workers throughout the full Federal Register document.