Theses Doctoral

Trained, Peer Mentorship and Veteran Support Organization Membership to Assist Transitioning Veterans: A Multi-arm, Parallel Randomized Controlled Trial (A Preliminary Investigation)

Geraci, Joseph

Objective: Some Veterans who recently served in the military report significant psychological problems based on their experiences in the military. Stressors that these Veterans face when they transition out of the military can exacerbate these problems and negatively impact their long-term physical and psychological well-being. We are conducting a randomized controlled trial (RCT) to evaluate the efficacy of providing Veterans who are transitioning back into their civilian communities trained, peer mentorship (Pro Vetus) and membership in a Veteran Support Organization (VSO- Team Red, White, and Blue) to reduce transition stressors, maintain psychological and physical health, reduce suicides and reduce criminal incidents.
Method: Six hundred, New York City area Veterans who transitioned out of the military since 2002 will be randomized to one of three study arms (1. Team Red, White and Blue membership plus trained, peer Pro Vetus mentorship; 2. Team Red, White, and Blue membership; and 3. Waitlist control). Intent-to-treat analysis will compare changes in transition stressors (proximal measures) as well as psychological and physical health, suicide, and criminal incidents (distal measures). For this preliminary investigation of the full RCT, the results of 58 Veterans who completed the pre-intervention and post-intervention were analyzed. For the analysis, the first and second study arms were combined into one intervention arm because of the unbalanced nature of the arms.
Results: The preliminary results indicate that Veterans in the combined intervention arm experienced less transition difficulties and had higher levels of social support at the four month post-intervention assessment. Though promising, there are still extensive limitations to the inferences that can be drawn from this research. These limitations will be reduced as data points increase and more Veterans participate in the research study.
Keywords: Veterans, transition, peer mentorship, Veteran Support Organization, PTSD, suicide


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More About This Work

Academic Units
Clinical Psychology
Thesis Advisors
Bonanno, George A.
Ph.D., Columbia University
Published Here
September 24, 2018