Getting by with a Little Help from Our Friends: The Role of Social Support in Addressing HIV-related Mental Health Disparities among Sexual Minorities in the Lower Rio Grande Valley.

08:00 EDT 14th August 2019 | BioPortfolio

Summary of "Getting by with a Little Help from Our Friends: The Role of Social Support in Addressing HIV-related Mental Health Disparities among Sexual Minorities in the Lower Rio Grande Valley."

This study examines how social support and perceived discrimination influence depressive symptoms of sexual minorities (including, lesbian, gay, bisexual-identifying individuals, and others with same-sex sexual partners) relative to heterosexual peers, while considering the role of HIV-positive status. We surveyed low-income, predominantly Hispanic/Latino/as residents receiving STI-testing and/or HIV/AIDS care in the lower Rio Grande Valley of southernmost Texas. Respondents aged 18+ took a self-administered survey in English or Spanish in a clinic waiting room (= 273). Based on OLS regression, HIV-positive status (OLS coefficient = 2.54, < .01) and social support (OLS coefficient = -0.17, < .001) were significant predictors of depressive symptoms among sexual minorities, but not those who identified as heterosexual. Perceived discrimination was uniquely associated with increased depressive symptoms among sexual minorities (interaction coefficient = 0.21, < .05). Clinicians treating sexual minority patients for depression should consider developing and applying resources tailored to individuals' level of social support and ongoing experiences of social discrimination.


Journal Details

This article was published in the following journal.

Name: Journal of homosexuality
ISSN: 1540-3602
Pages: 1-21


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