Effect of Discrimination on Mental Health Service Utilization among Chinese Americans

Michael S. Spencer, Juan Chen

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

101 Citations (Scopus)


Objectives. We examined the association between discrimination and mental health service use among a representative sample of Chinese Americans. Methods. Our data were derived from the 2-wave Chinese American Psychiatric Epidemiological Survey, a strata-cluster survey conducted in 1993 and 1994 in a western American city. Results. Language-based discrimination was associated with higher levels of use of informal services and seeking help from friends and relatives for emotional problems. Negative attitudes toward professional mental health services were associated with greater use of informal services. Conclusions. The findings suggest that language-based discrimination influences patterns of mental health service use among Chinese Americans. Implications for service providers and policymakers are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)809-814
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Public Health
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2004
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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