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Brief Reports   |    
Race, Stigma, and Mental Health Referrals Among Clients of Aging Services Who Screened Positive for Depression
Jo Anne Sirey, Ph.D.; Anderson J. Franklin, M.S., Ph.D.; Sharon E. McKenzie, M.S., Ph.D.; Samiran Ghosh, Ph.D.; Patrick J. Raue, Ph.D.
Psychiatric Services 2014; doi: 10.1176/appi.ps.201200530
View Author and Article Information

Dr. Sirey and Dr. Raue are with the Department of Psychiatry, Weill Cornell Medical College, White Plains, New York (e-mail: jsirey@med.cornell.edu). Dr. Franklin is with the Department of Psychology and Education, Boston College, Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts. Dr. McKenzie is with the Department of Physical Education, Recreation, and Health, Keane University, Union, New Jersey. Dr. Ghosh is with the Department of Family Medicine and Public Health Science, Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan.

Copyright © 2014 by the American Psychiatric Association

Abstract

Objectives  This study examined rates of anticipated stigma and its impact on successful mental health referrals among elderly clients of home-delivered nutrition services who met criteria for depression.

Methods  Elderly clients (N=732) admitted to a home meal program between December 2004 and June 2006 were assessed for depression, cognitive impairment, and anticipated stigma. Gender and race comparisons were conducted, and predictors of receiving a mental health referral were identified.

Results  African Americans were more likely than Caucasians to report high anticipated stigma, and African-American men reported the highest mean scores for anticipated stigma. There were no significant differences between African Americans and Caucasians in rates of depression or mental health referrals. For clients with depression, low anticipated stigma, younger age, and an interaction of race and gender predicted receipt of a mental health referral.

Conclusions  Anticipated stigma can hinder the process of referring older adults for mental health treatment.

Abstract Teaser
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Table 1Factors associated with receiving a mental health referral among 81 clients of aging services who screened positive for depressiona
Table Footer Note

a The logistic regression analysis was subjected to the Hosmer-Lemeshow goodness-of-fit test (χ2=9.14, df=8, p=.33).

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