Abstract

A decade has passed since the National Institute of Mental Health initiated its landmark Real Men Real Depression public education campaign. Despite increased awareness, depressed African American men continue to underutilize mental health treatment and have the highest all-cause mortality rates of any racial/ethnic group in the United States. We review a complex array of socio-cultural factors, including racism and discrimination, cultural mistrust, misdiagnosis and clinician bias, and informal support networks that contribute to treatment disparities. We identify clinical and community entry points to engage African American men. We provide specific recommendations for frontline mental health workers to increase depression treatment utilization for African American men. Providers who present treatment options within a frame of holistic health promotion may enhance treatment adherence. We encourage the use of multidisciplinary, community-based participatory research approaches to test our hypotheses and engage African American men in clinical research.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1548-6869
Print ISSN
1049-2089
Pages
pp. 21-34
Launched on MUSE
2015-02-20
Open Access
No
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