Understanding the Association Between Mental Health Knowledge and Mental Health Service Utilization Among Black Adults

Aderonke Olufunlola Bamgbose Pederson*, Alexander C. Tsai, Devan Hawkins, Judith T. Moskowitz, Lisa Dixon

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations

Abstract

Mental health knowledge limitations may contribute to the treatment gap among Black adults. We conducted an online cross-sectional study of Black adults in the United States (n = 262, aged 18–65 years) from diverse ethnic backgrounds (African-Americans, African immigrants, Afro-Caribbean immigrants). Gamma regression using generalized linear models was used to estimate the associations between mental health knowledge and willingness to seek help from mental health professionals. After adjusting for age, education and ethnicity, participants with higher specific knowledge about mental health (such as recognition of schizophrenia as a mental illness) were 26% more likely to report willingness to seek help from a mental health professional for personal and emotional problems (RR = 1.26, CI 1.12–1.41, p < 0.001). Knowledge building interventions (such as psychoeducation) that seek to increase specific knowledge (rather than general knowledge) may correlate more strongly with utilization of mental health services among Black adults.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)57-67
Number of pages11
JournalCommunity Mental Health Journal
Volume59
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2023

Keywords

  • Black adults
  • Knowledge
  • Mental health
  • Service utilization
  • Stigma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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