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Seattle Epidemiologic Research and Information Center (ERIC)

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National Vietnam Veterans Longitudinal Study Registry - History & Formation

History of NVVRS & NVVLS

In the early 1980s, there was concern regarding the health and well-being of Veterans who served during the Vietnam era. In response to these concerns, Congress passed Public Law 98-60 in 1983, which mandated that the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), contract for an independent national study looking at the frequency and effects of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and related postwar psychological issues. In 1984, the contract was awarded to the Research Triangle Institute (RTI), a for-profit research group, and the study was named the National Vietnam Veterans Readjustment Study (NVVRS). The NVVRS Report of Findings is available here.    

To determine the frequency and effects of PTSD across a 25 year period, Congress passed Public Law 106-419 in 2000.  This required the VA to contract a follow up study to the NVVRS, which was called the National Vietnam Veterans Longitudinal Study (NVVLS) and awarded to Abt, a for-profit research group.  This follow-up study filled a critical gap in understanding how military service affected adjustment later in life.  A total of 1,450 Veterans participated in at least one of the NVVLS study phases, which included a paper-and-pencil health questionnaire, telephone health interview, and a telephone mental health interview conducted by a professional clinical interviewer. 

Formation of the NVVLS Registry

The Seattle ERIC acquired stewardship of NVVRS and NVVLS data in April of 2015, and modified it to function as a registry. The 1,450 Veterans who participated in both NVVRS and NVVLS, and the data they provided are now part of the NVVLS Registry. The Seattle ERIC is located in Seattle, WA and is one of several within the Cooperative Studies Program (CSP) of VA Office of Research and Development (ORD). The Seattle ERIC has limited NVVRS data on NVVLS Registry members and is in the process of acquiring complete stewardship of the full NVVRS data set.

The NVVLS Registry is a closed cohort, and is not currently recruiting new members.