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[ Recorded presentation ] Recorded presentation

Impact of Trauma on Substance Abusing Homeless Men

Mimi Misung Kim, MS, PhD, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Duke University, 905 W. Main St., Brightleaf Square, Suite 23A, Durham, NC 27701, 919-682-8394, ext. 262, mkim@psych.duhs.duke.edu

This two-year study examined the prevalence and nature of trauma and the impact of these traumatic events and related factors (i.e. mental health, physical health, substance abuse, and social support) in a sample of homeless men in the Southeast. Data were collected at five agencies in the southeast.

In the first year, subjects (N=30) responded to open-ended qualitative questions. Qualitative analysis results of the first year interviews indicated that depression and multiple types of trauma in adulthood and childhood were prevalent in the sample. The second year (N=239) subjects completed a survey packet that consisted of seven instruments that collected data on homeless history, mental health symptoms, addiction, alcohol screening, life stressors, physical health and trauma. The second year results were used path analytic techniques. These results yielded strong relationships between the independent variables of depression, social support, and childhood stressful life experiences and the dependent variable of adult stressful life experiences.

The sparse literature on male homelessness suggests that services will be most effective if they are designed as a coordinated approach to simultaneously addressing recovery from trauma, substance abuse, mental illness, physical illness, unemployment, dysfunctional social support systems, and homelessness. The study serves to contribute to an underdeveloped and lacking area of research and to specifically identify homeless men as a sub-group of the homeless that is characterized by specific and individual needs. These specific and individual needs must be addressed in treatment protocols and policies in order to arrest chronic and detrimental behaviors and characteristics.

Learning Objectives:

Keywords: Homelessness, Underserved Populations

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
I have a significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.
Relationship: funding agency- National Institute of Drug Abuse

[ Recorded presentation ] Recorded presentation

Myths, Models and Prevalance Data on Homeless Populations

The 132nd Annual Meeting (November 6-10, 2004) of APHA