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Fifteen to twenty percent of older Americans (6 to 8 million people) suffer from depression but more than one-half do not receive any services, a burden disproportionately shared by low-income and minority older adults who receive few or no services. The investigators propose to test a community-based peer model of depression care called PEERS (a peer support program) that provides self-care support for minority and low-income older adults.
Depression is a major burden for minority and low-income older adults who are less likely to use mental health services, and development of new service delivery models is needed to improve the quality of life and address disparities to access for this group. The investigators propose to test the effectiveness of a peer-delivered depression care program that is embedded in the community and linked to the patient's primary care clinic. The investigators will carry out a randomized controlled trial of the PEERS program in which peer mentors who have personal experience of depression meet individually with older adults recruited in the community for 8 weekly meetings focused on relief of depressive symptoms through self-care support and linkages to community resources. This group of low-income and minority older adults in the intervention will be compared to a group that receives non-peer visits that provide social interaction. The PEERS program takes a chronic disease self-management approach and is guided by the conceptual frameworks of social support, peer support, and social learning. The investigators will conduct an analysis of mediation to understand the mechanism of peer support, by measuring factors such as self-efficacy and loneliness that may be responsible for the intervention effect. The investigators' goal is to use peer-delivered depression care to decrease the mental health morbidity of at-risk low-income and minority adults. The potential public health impact is high because the investigators' project seeks to increase access to depression for a vulnerable group of older adults who often do not get care and leverages an existing workforce of peer workers whose services are reimbursed in many states.
PEERS, Social interaction
Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center
Johns Hopkins University
Published on BioPortfolio: 2020-03-27T03:25:31-0400
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