Rurality or distance to care and the risk of homelessness among Afghanistan and Iraq veterans
Nelson, Richard E.
Byrne, Thomas H.
Montgomery, Ann Elizabeth
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CitationRichard E. Nelson, Adi Gundlapalli, Marjorie Carter, Emily Brignone, Warren Pettey, Thomas H. Byrne, Ann Elizabeth Montgomery, Randall Rupper, Jamison Fargo. 2017. "Rurality or distance to care and the risk of homelessness among Afghanistan and Iraq veterans." Housing, Care and Support, Volume 20, Issue 2, pp. 45 - 59.
INTRODUCTION: To date, no studies have examined the relationship of rurality and distance to nearest VA facility to risk of homelessness. METHODS: We examined differences in the rate of homelessness within a year of a Veteran's first encounter with the VA following last military separation based on rurality and distance to the nearest VA facility using multivariable log-binomial regressions. RESULTS: In our cohort of 708,120 Veterans, 73% were determined to have a forwarding address in urban areas, 59.2% and 86.7% lived within 40 miles of the nearest VA medical center (VAMC), respectively. Veterans living in a rural area and those living between 20+ miles away from the nearest VAMC were at a lower risk for homelessness. CONCLUSIONS: Our unique dataset allowed us to explore the relationship between geography and homelessness. These results are important to policy makers in understanding the risk factors for homelessness among Veterans and planning interventions.