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VA Cooperative Studies Program (CSP)

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Vietnam Morbidity Study


Investigator Access

What's Available

Check with the study contact and publications for information on a public dataset, data archive, data enclave, or website where data might be available

Available Documentation

Dates Data are Available

Access Criteria

Study Characteristics


  • Describe the current overall health status of Veterans of the Vietnam War
  • Identify similarities and differences in the prevalence of health conditions among three main comparison groups: Vietnam Veterans (Veterans who served in the Republic of Vietnam), Vietnam Era Veterans (Veterans from the Vietnam Era who served in other parts of the world), and the U.S. population (similarly-aged members of the U.S. general population without a history of military service)
  • Among Vietnam Veterans with in-country service, identify the current health status of those who served in the waters off of the Republic of Vietnam, known as Blue Water Navy (BWN) Veterans
  • Assess the occurrence of certain health conditions (ischemic heart disease, hypertension, diabetes mellitus type II, prostate cancer) presumptively connected to service in Vietnam among Vietnam Veterans (including Blue Water Navy Veterans), other era Veterans, and the U.S. population
  • Assess the occurrence of other health conditions of notable concern among Vietnam and other era Veterans, including stroke, dementia, traumatic brain injury, melanoma, pancreatic cancer, brain cancer, bladder cancer, respiratory cancers, and chronic blood borne virus infections (HIV, hepatitis B, hepatitis C)
  • Use the findings from this study to inform VA healthcare and benefits policies

Era of Service



  • Vietnam Veterans, with sub-analysis of BWN Veterans
  • Vietnam Era Veterans
  • Members of the U.S. public who did not serve in Vietnam

Study Design

Population-based survey

Time Period





  • Vietnam Veterans: 15,000, number of BWN Veterans to be determined
  • Vietnam Era Veterans: 15,000
  • U.S. population: 15,000

Response Rate


Recruitment Methods

  • Vietnam Veterans: recruited from a sample of VA rosters, BWN Veterans recruited using multistage sampling of the Vietnam Veterans
  • Vietnam Era Veterans: recruited from a sample of VA rosters
  • U.S. population: recruited from a targeted random sample



Data Collected

History/prevalence of diseases and conditions known or thought to be associated with military service in Vietnam

Data Collection Methods 

  • Two surveys: one short initial survey, one longer in-depth survey (paper, electronic, computer assisted telephone interviewing (CATI))
  • Medical records

Funding Source





Ralph Erickson, MD, DrPH

Selected Publications


More Information

Study website