The differential effect of attitudes on the use of mental health services
This study examines the relationship between attitudes and use of mental health related services using data collected from 4838 respondents in the first wave of the Yale Epidemiological Catchment Area (ECA) project. Respondents were asked about their propensity to use mental health services, their perceptions of barriers to using services, and the potential reactions of family members to their receiving mental health treatment. Each of these measures was related to use of mental health services - but only among women meeting DIS-DSM III criteria for a recent psychiatric disorder, our indicator of need for treatment. These findings suggest that increasing the availability and accessability of mental health treatment services will not promote superfluous utilization. On the other hand, such efforts may not be sufficient to reduce unmet need for mental health treatment among men with psychiatric disorders. These findings also contribute to our understanding of the disproportional use of mental health related services by women. © 1986 Springer-Verlag.
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