Education level, income level and mental health services use in Canada: Associations and policy implications
Auteurs: L. S. Steele, C. S. Dewa, E. Lin, et K. Lee
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Background Investigations of socio-economic gradients in mental health services use in Canada have used different measures of socio-economic status and have shown conflicting results. We explored the relationships between education level, income level and mental health services use among people with a mental illness using data from the Canadian Community Health Survey: Cycle 1.2. Methods We included adults who met the criteria for an anxiety or depressive disorder in the past 12 months (n=3,101). We calculated the likelihood of seeking mental healthcare from a psychiatrist, psychologist, family physician or social worker over a period of 12 months by education level. Results For each additional level of education, individuals were 15% more likely to see a psychiatrist, 12% more likely to see a family doctor, 16% more likely to see a psychologist and 16% more likely to see a social worker. Discussion / Conclusion We found marked inequity in mental health services use by education level that was consistent across service types. Programs aiming to deliver targeted services to consumers who have not completed high school should be developed and evaluated.
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