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Mental health services provided through the national centers of excellence in women's health: Do they reach rural women?

Archived Abstract of Former PSC Researcher

Hillemeier, Marianne M., C.S. Weisman, K. Baker, and K. Primavera. 2005. "Mental health services provided through the national centers of excellence in women's health: Do they reach rural women?" Womens Health Issues, 15(5): 224-229.

The National Centers of Excellence in Women's Health (CoEs) were established in part to provide integrated, comprehensive health care including mental health services to women. The purpose of this study was to identify mental health services currently provided by each of the 19 CoEs throughout the United States and to assess the extent to which these services are targeted to and utilized by rural women. Methods included both website review and semistructured interviews with knowledgeable informants in the CoEs. Center websites varied widely in mental health services mentioned: one CoE described services for nine different types of mental health issues, while one-fourth of the CoEs included no mention of any specific mental health services. Only four websites indicated that rural women were part of the CoE target population. Knowledgeable informant interviews indicated that seven of the CoEs had mental health staff onsite providing mental and behavioral health services. These services most often included treatment for depression and other mood disorders and for stress, as well as counseling for domestic violence issues. None of the CoEs offered mental or behavioral health services specifically targeted to rural women. We conclude that although they have not done so to date, the CoEs would be good sites in which to develop and test mental health outreach services for rural women.

DOI:10.1016/j.whi.2005.03.002 (Full Text)

Country of focus: United States.

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