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Member Research & Reports

Member Research & Reports

Drexel Study Examines What The New York Times Gets Wrong About PTSD

Drexel researchers examined how the country’s most influential paper, The New York Times, portrayed posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) from the year it was first added to the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (1980) to present day (2015).

Between 1980 and 2015, 871 news articles mentioned PTSD. In their American Journal of Orthopsychiatry paper, Dr. Jonathan Purtle, assistant professor in Drexel’s Dornsife School of Public Health and study co-authors, Drs. Katherine Lynn and Marshal Malik, pointed out three specific issues in the Times’ coverage that could have negative consequences.

Drs. Purtle, Lynn and Malik believe that broadening the discourse on PTSD can lead to better outcomes. Some ways that that can be achieved are focusing on survivor narratives that discussing resiliency and recovery, or talking about research that doesn’t wholly focus on the military causes of the disorder.