220656 Perceptions of Racial Discrimination, Mental Health, Health Care Utilization and Health Outcomes in Mississippi: Is there a Pathway?

Tuesday, November 9, 2010 : 3:20 PM - 3:35 PM

Olugbemiga Tanilepada Ekundayo, MD, MPH, DrPH , Department of Epidemiology & Biostatistics, Jackson State University, Jackson, MS
Lovetta Brown, MD, MPH , Office of Health Disparity Elimination, MS State Department of Health, Jackson, MS
Vincent Mendy, MPH , Office of Health Disparity Elimination, MS State Department of Health, Jackson, MS
Introduction Disparities and Inequities in health due to race have been identified as key variables that drive overall health (Hausman et al 2009, 2008, Barnes et al 2008, Williams, Neighbors and Jackson, 2003, Smedley et al 2003). In Mississippi, health burdens for Blacks drive overall rates, which are significantly worse than national levels. Among inequities, health care utilization have been linked to race. Effects of race have not however been linked to intermediate factors delineating specific pathways amenable to planned interventions. Thus, it is unclear if racial discrimination actually impacts health outcomes through mental health that drives the known health seeking risk factors. We therefore examine relationships between perceptions of discrimination and health seeking behavior (defined here as health care utilization) to see whether there is a pathway or a simple relationship.

Methods Using 5,257 respondents, we examine the 2004 BRFSS data for Mississippi to determine the associations between perception of racial discrimination, mental health and health care utilization. We defined and examined: 1. Perceptions of Racial Discrimination; 2. Mental Health, 3.Health care utilization and 4. Prostate and Breast cancers. Using multivariate logistic regression analyses and path analyses, we differentiate between health seeking behaviors stemming from perception of racial discrimination and those that are not, in relation to Prostate and Breast, cancers.

Results Results show significant relationships between perceptions of racial discrimination and health care utilization. However, the pathway of discrimination, mental health and health seeking behavior was not very clear.

Learning Areas:
Diversity and culture
Provision of health care to the public
Public health or related laws, regulations, standards, or guidelines
Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
1. Describe relationship of perceptions of racial discrimination with health care utilization 2. Identify associations between perceptions of racial discrimination and health care utilization 3. Analyze associations of racial discrimination, perceptions and health care utilization 4. Demonstrate the pathway form racial discrimination, to mental health, health seeking behavior and health outcome 5. Identify three implications for sensitivity to health care related to class, race and cultural differences in perception of care

Keywords: Health Disparities, Health Care Utilization

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Co-Investigator
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.