News reports about veterans committing acts of violence and film portrayals often stereotype veterans, which can create false assumptions among nonveterans. Those false assumptions may impact how veterans interact with healthcare systems and with nonveteran providers.
We know that as providers you see health conditions that are not specific to the military community. However, it is important to understand that although diagnostic criteria may be the same, recognizing how those conditions are connected to their military experiences will impact the care you provide your veteran patient or client.
THE IMPORTANCE OF KNOWING WHEN A VETERAN SERVED
Not only is it important to identify veterans, but you will also want to know their era of service, because veterans’ experiences and risks can vary by location and time served, as we will later discuss.
Below are the eras of service as designated by the VA: