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JOURNAL ARTICLE

Understanding Latinx youth mental health disparities by problem type: The role of caregiver culture

Thania Galvan, Omar G GudiƱo
Psychological Services 2019 June 13
31192675
Latinx youth are less likely to receive mental health services (MHS) than their non-Hispanic White counterparts. Disparities in MHS use have also been shown to vary by type of mental health problem and indices of caregiver culture even within Latinx samples, suggesting the need to go beyond cross-group racial/ethnic comparisons. However, much of the current research examining these within-group disparities has failed to directly measure the extent to which these differences are associated to specific culture. The present study utilized data from the Patterns of Care Study to examine the ways in which caregiver acculturation or enculturation is related to the MHS use of Latinx youth ( N = 308) over a 2- year period. Results demonstrated that caregiver acculturation significantly moderated the relationship between caregiver ratings of internalizing need and MHS use, such that the likelihood that Latinx youth with internalizing need would receive MHS increased as caregiver acculturation increased. Furthermore, the influence of caregiver acculturation appeared to be specific to youth with internalizing need. The relationship between externalizing need and MHS utilization was not moderated by either caregiver acculturation nor enculturation. This research provides evidence that ethnic disparities in service use among Latinx families cannot be explained by race/ethnicity alone, and that additional explanatory factors need to be considered in order to gain a better understanding of the factors that drive MHS disparities. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2019 APA, all rights reserved).

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