267015 Association between particularized trust and mental and physical health in community-based and congregation-based groups

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Maggi Miller, MS, PhD , Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC
Robert E. McKeown, PhD , Department of Epidemiology & Biostatistics, University of South Carolina, Arnold School of Public Health, Columbia, SC
Terry Wolfer, PhD , College of Social Work, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC
Holly Pope, MPH, PhD , Center for Research in Nutrition and Health Disparities, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC
Community-based and congregation-based groups bring together people who share a common interest or goal and create opportunity to establish and reinforce trusting relationships. There is evidence that group participation can have a positive impact on health, but associations have rarely been examined between trust formed within groups and individual health. A diverse convenience sample of 500 South Carolina residents responded to survey questions about the extent to which they trusted the members of the group that was most important to them during the past year, and identified the group as either community-based or congregation-based. If they participated in both, they were asked to answer questions about both groups. This study examined associations between trust in group members and physical and mental health outcomes measured by the SF12v2, and investigated whether these associations differed in community-based (N=417, mean age 46.1: SD=18.25) and congregation-based groups (N=281, mean age 51.0: SD=17.56). Data were analyzed using an ANACOVA controlling for multiple group membership and other covariates. A significant positive association was found between mental health and trust in community-based groups (‚ = 1.36, t = 2.43, p=0.016) and in congregation-based groups (‚ = 1.72, t = 2.43, p=0.016). No significant associations were observed between physical health and trust in either community-based (p= 0.232) or congregation-based groups (p=0.076). These results suggest that an association exists between trusting relationships in groups and the mental health of the group participants. These findings may provide evidence for public health program strategies to promote mental health.

Learning Areas:
Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Describe the relationship between particularized trust in community-based and congregation-based groups and mental and physical health

Keywords: Community Participation, Community-Based Health Promotion

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been working in the fields of health promotion and public health for the past 10 years. My research interests include Alzheimerís disease and related disorders, caregivers of individuals with Alzheimerís disease, social epidemiology, survey development, and qualitative data analysis.
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.