South African Security Force (SASF) members have been exposed to violence and unrest for many years. However, an alarming recent increase in retirement on psychiatric grounds has coincided with sociopolitical transformation of these services. This study investigated 124 SASF members who were medically retired as a result of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The most striking finding was the long duration of exposure to duty-related incidents (16.9 ± 7.0 years) that preceded the onset of significant symptoms. Ninety percent (N = 112) of members displayed a negative attitude toward their work, and 54% (N = 67) believed that issues related to transformation of the services had played a significant role in their disorder. These findings suggest that posttrauma factors may be as important as pretrauma and peritrauma variables in the development of PTSD.
|Number of pages||5|
|Journal||Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease|
|State||Published - 1 Apr 2003|