Managing Depression in African Americans: Consumer and Provider Perspectives
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The purpose of this project was to examine pathways to depression care and preceived barriers to care amoung African Americans who have experienced a recent depressive episode. The framework for developing specific aims and focus group questions is informed by collaborative models of care. The foundation of collaborative models of care lies in a shared understanding between consumer and provider of the nature of the problem, and agreement on treatment options and treatment plans. With this in mind, we examine factors influencing the provider-consumer encounter by evaluating the sociocultural meaning of depression for both consumers and providers. Expanding our knowledge about consumers' perception of depression, its treatment, and life-circumstances that may influence treatment-seeking behavior will enable us to inform providers about the culturally meaningful perceptions of depression that consumers bring to the encounter. Given that prior research has suggested that providers and consumers often focus on different elements of care, it is particularly important to examine the congruence between consumers and providers on perceptions of depression and its treatment. Information regarding consumers' perception of depression and its treatment, and divergence between consumers and providers can help us to develop more effective collaborative approaches for engaging depressed African Americans in treatment.