COMPARATIVE STUDY
JOURNAL ARTICLE

Racial/ethnic differences in attitudes toward seeking professional mental health services

C C Diala, C Muntaner, C Walrath, K Nickerson, T LaVeist, P Leaf
American Journal of Public Health 2001, 91 (5): 805-7
11344893

OBJECTIVES: This study examined racial/ethnic differences in attitudes toward seeking mental health services.

METHODS: Data from the National Comorbidity Survey, which administered a structured diagnostic interview to a representative sample of the US population (N = 8098), were analyzed. Multiple logistic regression was used, and data were stratified by need for mental health services.

RESULTS: African Americans with depression were more likely than Whites with depression to "definitely go" (odds ratio [OR] = 1.8, P < .001) seek mental health services. African Americans with severe psychiatric disorders were less likely to be "somewhat embarrassed if friends knew they sought care" (OR = 0.3, P < .001) than were their White counterparts.

CONCLUSIONS: African Americans reported more positive attitudes toward seeking mental health services than did Whites.

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