Profiles of Depression Help Seeking Among Black Americans: A Latent Class Approach

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Although Black Americans have lower prevalence of depression compared to non-Hispanic Whites (10% vs. 17%), they are nearly twice as likely to have worse outcomes. One contributor to poor depression outcomes involves the ways in which Black Americans seek help for depression. However, little is known about depression help-seeking behavior, and the use of multiple sources of help, among Black Americans. This study used latent class analysis to identify unique constellations of depression help seeking, from multiple sources, among African American and Black Caribbeans. Results indicated four profiles of depression help seeking including Informal/Primary Care Utilizers (41.4%), Formal Mental Health Utilizers (40.6%), All Support Utilizers (9.8%), and Mixed Source Utilizers (8.2%). The constellation of each profile and demographic differences in class assignment are discussed. Results have implications for tailored depression interventions for Black Americans including community-based psychoeducation and cultural competence training for mental health providers.

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