Noticing the signs and symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) early and finding the right treatment option can help people recover. That’s why Google called on VA when it was looking to use a tool that helps visitors determine if they might be experiencing PTSD.

Researchers at VA’s National Center for PTSD developed the PC-PTSD-5, a simple and effective, medically-validated survey to test the likelihood of having PTSD. The five item screening assesses key characteristics of PTSD, but is not a diagnosis.

When visitors search for PTSD on Google mobile in the United States, they will get a panel that contains facts and treatment information.  By tapping “Check if you may have PTSD,” visitors can answer a private questionnaire to assess the likelihood PTSD.

“We hope that by making this information available on Google, more people will learn about PTSD and have informed conversations with their health care provider,” said Dr. Paula Schnurr, executive director of VA’s National Center for PTSD. “The screen won’t be able to tell someone for sure if they have PTSD, but it may indicate whether it’s a good idea to see a health care provider for further assessment.”

For more information about PTSD and effective treatment options, visit the National Center for PTSD website at www.ptsd.va.gov.

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Peggy Willoughby is the director of communications for VA’s National Center for PTSD. She joined VA in 1993 and is the daughter and spouse of Army Veterans who served in the Korean War and during the Vietnam era.

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