Project Title

How Has Mental Health Changed for Gender and Sexual Minorities Due to COVID-19?

Presenters

ROGER OTWAYFollow

Academic department under which the project should be listed

RCHSS - Psychological Science

Faculty Sponsor Name

Dr. Evelina Sterling

Abstract (300 words maximum)

One of the most at-risk populations for mental health issues in the LGBTQ community. This population experiences higher rates of depression overall. Unfortunately, mental health is often forgotten in overall health and well-being. For members of the LGBTQ community who also experience significant physical health issues, such as chronic conditions, mental health (especially if not appropriately addressed) can further worsen leading to deteriorating physical health. This health inequity is often exasperated by social factors like disrespect, discrimination, stigma, and trauma. Given the current situation involving COVID-19, the overall health of the LGBTQ community has been further impacted, including severe effects of isolation and lack of access to regular and appropriate healthcare. This study is part of a much larger study involving African American gay men with multiple chronic conditions (both physical and mental) who also tend to suffer from disproportionate rates of morbidity and mortality related to their illnesses. Specifically, this study will focus on how African American gay men’s mental health needs and experiences have been impacted by COVID-19. A mixed-method approach will be utilized to gather qualitative (interview) and quantitative (survey) data from African American gay men with multiple chronic conditions and their healthcare providers. Data will be analyzed to assess knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors around the mental health experiences of African American gay men before and during COVID-19. We aim to improve our understanding of why and how COVID-19 has impacted the mental healthcare process and outcomes among African American gay men living with physical and mental illnesses.

Project Type

Event

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How Has Mental Health Changed for Gender and Sexual Minorities Due to COVID-19?

One of the most at-risk populations for mental health issues in the LGBTQ community. This population experiences higher rates of depression overall. Unfortunately, mental health is often forgotten in overall health and well-being. For members of the LGBTQ community who also experience significant physical health issues, such as chronic conditions, mental health (especially if not appropriately addressed) can further worsen leading to deteriorating physical health. This health inequity is often exasperated by social factors like disrespect, discrimination, stigma, and trauma. Given the current situation involving COVID-19, the overall health of the LGBTQ community has been further impacted, including severe effects of isolation and lack of access to regular and appropriate healthcare. This study is part of a much larger study involving African American gay men with multiple chronic conditions (both physical and mental) who also tend to suffer from disproportionate rates of morbidity and mortality related to their illnesses. Specifically, this study will focus on how African American gay men’s mental health needs and experiences have been impacted by COVID-19. A mixed-method approach will be utilized to gather qualitative (interview) and quantitative (survey) data from African American gay men with multiple chronic conditions and their healthcare providers. Data will be analyzed to assess knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors around the mental health experiences of African American gay men before and during COVID-19. We aim to improve our understanding of why and how COVID-19 has impacted the mental healthcare process and outcomes among African American gay men living with physical and mental illnesses.