Relationships between Religiosity and Delayed Healthcare Seeking among American Muslims
Methods: We administered surveys to Muslim women attending mosque and community events in Chicago. Our survey incorporates measures of religious coping, fatalism, religiosity, perceived discrimination, usage of alternative medicine, and Islamic modesty. The primary outcome measure asked women whether they ever delayed seeking healthcare when no female providers were available.
Results: 254 women completed the survey with nearly equal numbers of African-Americans (25.8%), Arab-Americans (33.0%), and South-Asians (33.5%). The median age was 50. Fifty-four percent reported delayed healthcare seeking when a gender-concordant provider was unavailable. In multivariate analysis adjusting for socio-demographic factors, higher religiosity (OR=7.3,p<0.01) and modesty levels (OR=1.4,p<0.001) were positively associated with reporting delayed healthcare seeking when a gender-concordant provider was unavailable. Having lived in the U.S. for >20 years (OR=0.16,p<0.01) was negatively related to delayed healthcare seeking.
Conclusion: Many respondents reported delayed healthcare seeking due to the unavailability of gender-concordant providers. More religious women and those with higher levels of modesty delayed care-seeking more frequently. Our research highlights the need for gender-concordant providers and culturally sensitive care for American Muslims, and has implications for policy on reducing health disparities.
Learning Areas:Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Diversity and culture
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Social and behavioral sciences
Describe the relationship between religion-related factors and Muslim women's decision to seek or delay healthcare Identify potential implications of religion-related factors to seeking care for health interventions and policy
Keyword(s): Minority Health, Faith Community
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am primarily responsible for data analysis, literature review, and manuscript preparation for this research project.
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.