270395 Prevalence of medical co-morbidities among adults recovering from serious mental illnesses: Using community health fairs to assess risks and enhance wellness

Monday, October 29, 2012

Dennis Grey, BA , Psychiatry, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Judith A. Cook, PhD , Department of Psychiatry, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Lisa Razzano, PhD , Psychiatry, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Peggy Swarbrick, PhD , Wellness Institute, Collaborative Support Programs of New Jersey, Freehold, NJ
Jessica Jonikas, MA , Psychiatry, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Chantelle Yost, BA , Psychiatry, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Larisa Burke, MA , Psychiatry, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Tina Carter, BA , Psychiatry, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Background: We assessed prevalence of medical co-morbidities among adults with serious mental illnesses via community health fairs at which peer health educators reviewed results with participants post-assessment. We hypothesized that co-morbidities would be more prevalent than in the general population, and predicted significant post-test improvement in health attitudes and efficacy.

Methods: 349 community mental health program clients in NJ, MD and IL attended health fairs run collaboratively by university researchers and peer wellness staff. Conditions tested were diabetes, hyperlipidemia, hypertension, overweight/obesity, nicotine dependence, drug/alcohol abuse, and heart attack risk. Participants completed pre/post assessments of multidimensional health locus of control (MHLOC) and wellness attitudes/behaviors. Random regression examined improvement controlling for age, gender, race/ethnicity, education, and site.

Results: Proportions of participants screening positive compared to national surveys of U.S. adult populations were: 82% vs. 68% overweight/obese; 14% vs. 8% type 2 diabetes; 5% vs. 16% high cholesterol; 32% vs. 29% hypertensive; 42% smokers with 62% nicotine dependence vs. 21% with 57%; 17% vs. 8% alcohol abuse/dependence risk; 9% vs. 2% drug abuse/dependence risk; and 11% vs. 3% high heart attack risk. Multivariable random regression found significantly increased self-rated abilities for health practices (estimate=0.69, p<.01), perceived competence for health maintenance (estimate=0.91, p<.001), and MHLOC subscales for “internal control” (estimate=0.61, p<.05) and “powerful others” (estimate=1.74, p<.001), but not “chance.”

Conclusions: We found higher prevalence of most but not all medical conditions, and participants' health efficacy improved following fair participation. Health risk screening can help address epidemiologic, education, and prevention goals for this vulnerable population.

Learning Areas:
Chronic disease management and prevention
Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
List the co-occurring medical conditions with a higher prevalence among adults with serious mental illness than the U.S. general adult population. Identify the types of health efficacy that improved among adults with mental illnesses in this research following participation in a health fair.

Keywords: Epidemiology, Mental Illness

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been the biostatistician on multiple federally-funded grants focused on HIV/AIDS. I performed all of the statistical analyses that are reported in this poster. I am able to answer all questions about study design, procedures, analysis, and interpretation of results. I have no conflicts of interest to disclose.
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.