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Public Health Rep ; 136(4): 508-517, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1243754


OBJECTIVES: Experiences of vicarious racism-hearing about racism directed toward one's racial group or racist acts committed against other racial group members-and vigilance about racial discrimination have been salient during the COVID-19 pandemic. This study examined vicarious racism and vigilance in relation to symptoms of depression and anxiety among Asian and Black Americans. METHODS: We used data from a cross-sectional study of 604 Asian American and 844 Black American adults aged ≥18 in the United States recruited from 5 US cities from May 21 through July 15, 2020. Multivariable linear regression models examined levels of depression and anxiety by self-reported vicarious racism and vigilance. RESULTS: Controlling for sociodemographic characteristics, among both Asian and Black Americans, greater self-reported vicarious racism was associated with more symptoms of depression (Asian: ß = 1.92 [95% CI, 0.97-2.87]; Black: ß = 1.72 [95% CI, 0.95-2.49]) and anxiety (Asian: ß = 2.40 [95% CI, 1.48-3.32]; Black: ß = 1.98 [95% CI, 1.17-2.78]). Vigilance was also positively related to symptoms of depression (Asian: ß = 1.54 [95% CI, 0.58-2.50]; Black: ß = 0.90 [95% CI, 0.12-1.67]) and anxiety (Asian: ß = 1.98 [95% CI, 1.05-2.91]; Black: ß = 1.64 [95% CI, 0.82-2.45]). CONCLUSIONS: Mental health problems are a pressing concern during the COVID-19 pandemic. Results from our study suggest that heightened racist sentiment, harassment, and violence against Asian and Black Americans contribute to increased risk of depression and anxiety via vicarious racism and vigilance. Public health efforts during this period should address endemic racism as well as COVID-19.

African Americans/psychology , Anxiety/ethnology , Asian Americans/psychology , COVID-19/psychology , Depression/ethnology , Racism/psychology , Adult , Anxiety/etiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Depression/etiology , Female , Humans , Linear Models , Male , Racism/statistics & numerical data , United States/epidemiology
J Racial Ethn Health Disparities ; 2021 Apr 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1171251


BACKGROUND: Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) disproportionately affects African Americans, and they tend to experience more severe course and adverse outcomes. Using a simple and validated instrument of depression screening, we evaluated the incidence and severity of major depression among African American patients within 90 days of recovery from severe COVID-19-associated respiratory failure. METHODS: African American patients hospitalized and treated with invasive mechanical ventilation for COVID-19-associated respiratory failure in the intensive care unit (ICU) of Grady Memorial Hospital, Atlanta, between April 1, 2020, and June 30, 2020, were screened for depression within 90 days of hospital discharge using the validated patient health questionnaires (PHQ-2) and PHQ-9. RESULTS: A total of 73 patients completed the questionnaire. The median age was 52.5 years [IQR 44-65] and 65% were males. The most common comorbidities were hypertension (66%) and diabetes mellitus (51%). Forty-four percent of the patients had a diagnosis of major depressive disorder (MDD) based on their PHQ-9 questionnaire responses. The incidence of MDD was higher among females (69%, n=18/26) compared to males (29%, n=14/47), in patients > 75 years (66%) and those with multiple comorbidities (45%). Eighteen percent of the patients had moderate depression, while 15% and 22% had moderately severe and severe depression, respectively. Only 26% (n=7/27) of eligible patients were receiving treatment for depression at the time of this survey. CONCLUSION: The incidence of depression in a cohort of African American patients without prior psychiatric conditions who recovered from severe COVID-19 infection was 44%. More than 70% of these patients were not receiving treatment for depression.

Biomed Res Int ; 2020: 2160894, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-939924


BACKGROUND: Racial disparities in influenza vaccination among underserved minority older adults are a public health problem. Understanding the factors that impact influenza vaccination behaviors among underserved older African-Americans could lead to more effective communication and delivery strategies. AIMS: We aimed to investigate rate and factors associated with seasonal influenza vaccination among underserved African-American older adults. We were particularly interested in the roles of demographic factors, socioeconomic status, and continuity and patient satisfaction with medical care, as well as physical and mental health status. METHODS: This community-based cross-sectional study recruited 620 African-American older adults residing in South Los Angeles, one of the most under-resources areas within Los Angeles County, with a population of over one million. Bivariate and multiple regression analyses were performed to document independent correlates of influenza vaccination. RESULTS: One out of three underserved African-American older adults aged 65 years and older residing in South Los Angeles had never been vaccinated against the influenza. Only 49% of participants reported being vaccinated within the 12 months prior to the interview. One out of five participants admitted that their health care provider recommended influenza vaccination. However, only 45% followed their provider's recommendations. Multivariate logistic regression shows that old-old (≥75 years), participants who lived alone, those with a lower level of continuity of care and satisfaction with the accessibility, availability, and quality of care, and participants with a higher number of depression symptoms were less likely to be vaccinated. As expected, participants who indicated that their physician had advised them to obtain a flu vaccination were more likely to be vaccinated. Our data shows that only gender was associated with self-report of being advised to have a flu shot. Discussion. One of the most striking aspects of this study is that no association between influenza vaccination and being diagnosed with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or other major chronic condition was detected. Our study confirmed that both continuity of care and satisfaction with access, availability, and quality of medical care are strongly associated with current influenza vaccinations. We documented that participants with a higher number of depression symptoms were less likely to be vaccinated. CONCLUSION: These findings highlight the role that culturally acceptable and accessible usual source of care van play as a gatekeeper to facilitate and implement flu vaccination among underserved minority older adults. Consistent disparities in influenza vaccine uptake among underserved African-American older adults, coupled with a disproportionate burden of chronic diseases, places them at high risk for undesired outcomes associated with influenza. As depression is more chronic/disabling and is less likely to be treated in African-Americans, there is a need to screen and treat depression as a strategy to enhance preventive care management such as vaccination of underserved African-American older adults. Quantification of associations between lower vaccine uptake and both depression symptoms as well as living alone should enable health professionals target underserved African-American older adults who are isolated and suffer from depression to reduce vaccine-related inequalities.

African Americans/statistics & numerical data , Influenza Vaccines , Vaccination/statistics & numerical data , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Health Personnel , Humans , Influenza, Human/prevention & control , Logistic Models , Los Angeles , Male , Medically Underserved Area , Patient Acceptance of Health Care , Patient Satisfaction , Pulmonary Disease, Chronic Obstructive/epidemiology , Socioeconomic Factors , Vaccination/psychology