August 04, 2021
Breaking the Barriers for Mental Health Care in Minority Community
Mental health does not discriminate and can plague anyone whether rich, poor, belonging to any race, gender, or origin. Recent studies showed some astounding statistics, which clearly suggested that the approach of minority communities towards mental health treatment is miniscule. It was revealed that out of the 24.6 percent African-Americans and 19.6 percent Hispanics suffering from depression, only 37 percent opted for treatment for mental health compared to the 45 percent of white Americans who sought treatment for the same. Furthermore, at 22 percent, the treatment rate is even lower for Asian-Americans.
Research suggests that minority communities are considered to be a high-risk population and their mental health disorder statistics are much higher than those of white Americans. People from minority communities are likely to suffer from suicidal tendencies, depression, schizophrenia, and anxiety.
Barriers in Seeking Mental Health Treatment
- Healthcare cost: Several studies have shown that minority communities such as African-Americans, Asian-Americans, and Hispanics come under the lower income group and are financially strained. Most of the times, they do not have access to adequate insurance as compared to white Americans, restricting their access to treatment.
- Language: Language is paramount to communicate with the doctor. The difference in language stops people from the minority communities to express their condition to a physician. This, in turn, prohibits them from building trust with the doctor. This inability to build trust often prevents them from seeking mental health treatment.
- Transportation and location: Minority communities usually stay in rural and remote areas and due to unavailability of healthcare professionals in their vicinity they are forced to travel miles for treatment. Due to lack of transportation facilities and the thought of undertaking an arduous journey to faraway places to seek medical help, they abort any plans to see a doctor.
- Mistrust: Minorities have a history of being mistreated in every aspect, including being meted out secondhand treatment by health professionals. This has created a deep mistrust in them because of which they abstain from seeking the required medical help.
- Stigma: Mental health is considered a taboo among people of the minority communities. It is acknowledged as a sign of personal weakness. Addressing mental health issues fosters a dreaded feeling of being left out or abandoned by the society.
- Shift in primary care setting: In order to remove the barriers in seeking mental health treatment among the minority population, it is imperative to devise an improved mental health evaluation process. It calls for individual assessment of every patient with a specific treatment plan. Treatment should be provided as per individual assessment and severity.
- Expanding the reach of network hospitals, mental health facilities, and doctors: Since majority of the minority population dwell in rural areas or outskirts of cities, accessing medical help is a big challenge for them. By expanding the reach of the network of health care facilities and doctors, greater access to medical care can be provided to these communities.
- Focusing on affordable medical care: Minority communities primarily belong to the low income strata of the society. They have no access to adequate insurance. Keeping this in mind, they should be provided with viable insurance options and more cost effective health care plans.
- Understanding their culture: Forging a close connection with them by learning about their culture, race, language, and ethnicity can bring about a sea change in the outlook of the general population. This will encourage these communities to connect with the mainstream.
- Creating awareness: Spreading awareness and education is the key to combat mental illnesses. People need to be aware that mental disorders are not a sign of personal weakness or a moral flaw. They are just health conditions like any other physical ailment.
How we can help?
Invictus Health Group is one of the best names in the mental health treatment landscape. We enable patients, including those from the minority community, to contact treatment centers to avail credible mental health treatment. We interact with patients to understand their needs and concerns and provide them with appropriate information so that they can make informed decisions.
We work closely with our extensive network of mental health treatment partners to develop and implement quality evidence-based treatment therapies. Invictus Health Group has helped hundreds of patients find a treatment center that suits their needs regarding mental health issues. To know more about mental health treatment plans, contact us at our toll free number 866 548 0190. You can also chat with our counselors available 24/7 online.