Implementing a depression screening and referral program in an African American church community
Mary S. Garner DNP, MSPH, MPA, RN
- Contributor Affiliation(s)
- Jacksonville University, Jacksonville, Florida, USA
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Purpose: The purpose of this quality improvement project was to launch a depression screening and stigma reduction program in a nondenominational church that serves mainly African Americans. Potential links between stigma, such as beliefs related to mental illness, and how education can influence help-seeking and health literacy among ministerial leaders were identified.
Methods: From March to June 2019, 28 African American ministerial leaders participated in this depression/suicidality educational awareness program. Three instruments were selected for this study: a demographic questionnaire, a Mental Health Knowledge pre/posttest, and a Community Attitudes Towards Mental Illness pre/post survey. Paired sample t-tests were used to determine pre- and post-education mental health knowledge and the presence of stigmatizing attitudes among ministerial leaders.
Results: There was an increase in the mental health knowledge which was retained for a period of at least 3 months, t (25) = 9.74; p <.001. Two of the four Community Attitudes Towards the Mentally Ill subscales showed significant reductions in negative attitudes on both the Authoritarianism and Social Restrictiveness scales, t (25) = -9.05, p < .001; t (25) = -7.65, p < .001, respectively.
Recommendations: Many Americans do not have their depression needs assessed. African Americans are one of the populations that are most likely to be missed. Additional efforts, such as collaboration with community mental health providers, seem to be promising steps towards optimizing diagnosis, treatment, follow up, and sustainability of faith-based programs.
|DNP Capstone Project||Self-submission||Faculty Approved: Degree-based Submission||Text-based Document|
|Level of Evidence||Research Approach||Keywords|
|Quality Improvement||Quantitative Research||Mental Illness;
African American Church;
Depression Screening Tools;
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