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Datapoints: Trends in Mortality Among Homeless VA Patients With Severe Mental Illness
Denis G. Birgenheir, Ph.D.; Zongshan Lai, M.P.H.; Amy M. Kilbourne, Ph.D., M.P.H.
Psychiatric Services 2013; doi: 10.1176/appi.ps.201300026
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The authors are affiliated with the Department of Veterans Affairs Ann Arbor Health Center for Clinical Management Research. Send correspondence to Dr. Kilbourne at North Campus Research Complex, 2800 Plymouth Rd., Ann Arbor, MI 48108 (e-mail: amykilbo@med.umich.edu). Dr. Kilbourne and Tami L. Mark, Ph.D., are editors of this column.

Copyright © 2013 by the American Psychiatric Association

Extract

Both homelessness and severe mental illness are known to increase the likelihood of early mortality. We determined years of potential life lost (YPLL) over an 11-year period among Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) patients using homeless services, assessing for the impact of severe mental illness.

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Figure 1 Years of potential life lost (YPLL) from all-cause mortality among veterans (N=575,194), by homelessness and severe mental illness (SMI) statusa

a SMI: inpatient or outpatient ICD-9 code for schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, or other psychosis. Homelessness: outpatient or inpatient service code ICD-9 V60.0 (lack of housing) or clinic stop code 501 or 528 (homeless mentally ill outreach), 522 or 530 (Housing and Urban Development–Veterans Affairs Supported Housing initiative), 529 (health care for homeless veterans), 590 (community outreach for homeless veterans), or inpatient homeless stay (37, domiciliary; 28, homeless compensated work therapy)

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