Epidemiological studies demonstrate that sexual minority women (including lesbian and bisexual women) are at high risk for depression, lifetime suicidality, and other mental health problems. Although no population-based data are available regarding gender minority women (including transgender and transsexual women), the available research suggests that they too are at high risk for depression. Results of the few studies to examine patterns of mental health service utilization among lesbian, bisexual, and trans (LBT) women indicate that despite elevated rates of mental health service use, LBT women report very high rates of unmet need for mental health care (in a recent survey, over 50%). However, it is unknown whether this unmet need is explained by levels of need that exceed the capacity of services, or lack of effectiveness of services. Research is therefore needed to understand the barriers to effective depression treatment for sexual and gender minority women in Ontario. This project will improve understanding of the barriers to effective depression treatment for sexual and gender minority women in Ontario and ultimately facilitate the removal of barriers, improving access to prompt and effective diagnosis and treatment. A combination of qualitative, quantitative, and community-based research approaches will be used to: describe the barriers to effective depression treatment encountered by LBT women in Ontario; compare the mental health service utilization patterns of LBT and heterosexual women in Ontario; and use the knowledge gained to inform service delivery.
Canadian Institutes of Health Research - Institute of Gender and Health
Year Project Started:
Principal Investigator: Dr. Lori Ross
Centre for Addiction and Mental Health
(e.g type 1000 for 1,000)