Using e-health to enable culturally appropriate mental healthcare in rural areas

Peter Mackinlay Yellowlees, Shayna Marks, Don Hilty, Jay H. Shore

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

38 Scopus citations

Abstract

The objective of this study was to review relevant research issues in the provision of culturally appropriate e-mental healthcare and make recommendations for expanding and prioritizing research efforts in this area. A workshop was convened by the Office of Rural Mental Health Research (ORMHR) at the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), the Center for Reducing Health Disparities at the University of California, Davis, the California Telemedicine and e-Health Center, and the California Endowment in December 2005, during which papers were presented concerning culture and e-mental health. Relevant literature was reviewed and research questions were developed. Major issues in the provision of culturally appropriate e-mental healthcare were defined, as were the barriers to the provision of such care in rural areas and interventions to overcome these barriers. Rural areas have increased barriers to culturally appropriate mental healthcare because of increased rates of poverty, increasingly large ethnic minority populations, and various degrees of geographical isolation and cultural factors specific to rural communities. Although culture and language are major barriers to receiving appropriate mental healthcare, including e-mental healthcare, they cannot be separated from other related influential variables, such as poverty and geography. Each of these critical issues must be taken into account when planning technologically enabled rural mental health services. This review describes one in a series of ORMHR/NIMH efforts aimed at stimulating research using culturally appropriate e-mental health strategies that address unique characteristics of various racial/ethnic groups, as well as rural and frontier populations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)486-492
Number of pages7
JournalTelemedicine and e-Health
Volume14
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 2008

Keywords

  • Culture appropriateness
  • E-mental healthcare
  • Rural areas

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)
  • Bioengineering
  • Media Technology
  • Nursing(all)

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