Latent class analysis of mental health and alcohol outcomes for veterans resident in Northern Ireland

Catherine Hitch, Paul Toner, Cherie Armour

Research output: Contribution to conferencePosterpeer-review


The Northern Irish (NI) veteran population has been excluded from veteran/military research due to NI security concerns. Mental ill (MI) health is often comorbid with risky drinking, and rates of MI health within NI are particularly high. To support NI veterans effectively it is important to understand what comorbidities exist for this population.

Latent Class Analysis was conducted on secondary survey responses of 609 NI veterans. Six scales of MH and alcohol use were included (anxiety, alcohol, depression, PTSD, complex PTSD and dissociative sub-type).

Four distinct classes were elicited: Class 1 (n=62, 10.18%), the high depression/anxiety class; Class 2 (n=120, 19.7%) the highly comorbid class, where alcohol and dissociation suffered at moderate level and other four at a high level; Class 3 (n=61, 10.02%) the high PTSD with moderate alcohol and depression class; and Class 4 (n=366, 60.1%) the low comorbidity with moderate alcohol class.

Four distinct sub-groups exist with specific comorbidities within the NI veteran population. Approximately 40% suffered comorbidities of between three to six MIs at moderate to high levels. If risky alcohol use at moderate levels was not necessarily associated with MI it may have cultural drivers; this requires further research. Interventions should aim to address the different NI veteran-specific MI comorbidities.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusAccepted - 24 Jun 2022
EventCIMVHR Forum 2022 - Canada , Halifax
Duration: 17 Oct 202219 Oct 2022


ConferenceCIMVHR Forum 2022


  • latent classes
  • mental health
  • alcohol
  • Northern Ireland
  • veterans


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