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Stigma as a barrier to mental health service use among female sex workers in Switzerland


Zehnder, Mara. Stigma as a barrier to mental health service use among female sex workers in Switzerland. 2019, University of Zurich, Faculty of Medicine.

Abstract

Background: Many sex workers suffer from mental health problems, but do not seek help.

Aim: To examine stigma-related and non stigma-related barriers to care and perceived need for treatment among female sex workers in Switzerland.

Methods: Mental health service use, barriers to care, perceived need and presence of illness, symptoms, and psychiatric diagnoses were assessed among 60 female sex workers in Zürich, Switzerland.

Outcomes: Mental health service use was defined as use of psychiatric medication, psychotherapy, or substance use services for at least 1 month during the past 6 months.

Results: Adjusting for symptom levels, mental health service use was predicted by lower stigma-related, not by structural, barriers as well as by more perceived need for treatment and higher age.

Clinical Implications: Sex workers with mental health problems would benefit from non-stigmatizing mental health care as well as from interventions to reduce public and self-stigma associated with mental illness and sex work.

Strengths and Limitations: Limitations are the cross-sectional data, limited sample size, and recruitment from an information center for sex workers.

Conclusion: Interventions that aim to increase mental health service use among sex workers should take stigma variables into account.

Abstract

Background: Many sex workers suffer from mental health problems, but do not seek help.

Aim: To examine stigma-related and non stigma-related barriers to care and perceived need for treatment among female sex workers in Switzerland.

Methods: Mental health service use, barriers to care, perceived need and presence of illness, symptoms, and psychiatric diagnoses were assessed among 60 female sex workers in Zürich, Switzerland.

Outcomes: Mental health service use was defined as use of psychiatric medication, psychotherapy, or substance use services for at least 1 month during the past 6 months.

Results: Adjusting for symptom levels, mental health service use was predicted by lower stigma-related, not by structural, barriers as well as by more perceived need for treatment and higher age.

Clinical Implications: Sex workers with mental health problems would benefit from non-stigmatizing mental health care as well as from interventions to reduce public and self-stigma associated with mental illness and sex work.

Strengths and Limitations: Limitations are the cross-sectional data, limited sample size, and recruitment from an information center for sex workers.

Conclusion: Interventions that aim to increase mental health service use among sex workers should take stigma variables into account.

Statistics

Additional indexing

Item Type:Dissertation (cumulative)
Referees:Rufer Michael
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Psychiatric University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Psychiatry, Psychotherapy, and Psychosomatics
UZH Dissertations
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:2019
Deposited On:12 Feb 2021 12:03
Last Modified:13 Feb 2021 04:40
OA Status:Closed
Free access at:Related URL. An embargo period may apply.
Related URLs:https://www.zora.uzh.ch/id/eprint/181291/
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30804819/
https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpsyt.2019.00032/full

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