The 131st Annual Meeting (November 15-19, 2003) of APHA

The 131st Annual Meeting (November 15-19, 2003) of APHA

3015.0: Monday, November 17, 2003 - 9:45 AM

Abstract #62948

PTSD, depression, and prescription drug use after the World Trade Center attack among Chinese displaced workers

Heike Thiel de Bocanegra, PhD MPH and Ellen Brickman, PhD. Research and Evaluation, Safe Horizon, 180 Livingston Street, 3rd floor, Brooklyn, NY 11201, 718 928 6916,

The adverse psychological impact of the September 11th attacks on the World Trade Center on residents of New York City has been well documented. Displaced workers in Manhattan’s Chinatown are of special concern because of proximity to the attacks, the profound economic impact of September 11th, and potential barriers to immigrants’ utilization of mental health services. To identify psychological sequelae of the World Trade Center attacks in immigrant Chinese displaced workers, we interviewed 77 displaced workers in May 2002. Participants were identified from a central database of clients seen at the agency’s assistance centers in Chinatown, which provided financial assistance, information and referral services. This database included 5,000 Chinese-descendant displaced workers who immigrated to the United States. One third of the sample was classified as at least moderately depressed, and 21% met diagnostic criteria for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder; however, few had utilized mental health services. Depression and PTSD scores were positively correlated with age, age at immigration to the U.S., and prescription drug use after September 11th, among other variables. Participants did not report to have begun or increased alcohol, tobacco or recreational drug use after the September 11 attacks. These data will be compared with those generated in February 2003. Results of the first assessment suggest the need for mental health outreach in this community. Outreach strategies should target both displaced workers and their informal support networks, to facilitate identification of and service access for those impacted by the attacks.

Learning Objectives:

Keywords: Asian Americans, Prescription Drug Use Patterns

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

Emerging Health Issues among API Populations

The 131st Annual Meeting (November 15-19, 2003) of APHA