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The effects of compensation on psychiatric disability

By Joseph L. Perl and Marvin W. Kahn


Psychiatrically impaired veterans who were receiving 100% partial or no compensation for their psychiatric disabilities were compared on type and level of psychopathology, self-esteem, locus of control and treatment utilization. All groups were highly elevated on measures of psychopathology. There were no differences between groups on psychopathology measures, except that the 100% group scored significantly higher than the uncompensated group on hostility. Differences in locus of control were not found. On 3 of 10 subscales, partially compensated patients reported higher levels of self-esteem than patients in one or both of the other groups. Uncompensated patients required the most hospitalization. Those who were receiving 100% disability compensation required less hospitalization and the number of days they spent in the hospital was significantly reduced following attainment of full compensation.

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