Prevalence and correlates of mental disorders among Native American women in primary care

Am J Public Health. 2004 Jan;94(1):71-7. doi: 10.2105/ajph.94.1.71.


Objectives: We examined the lifetime and the past-year prevalence and correlates of common mental disorders among American Indian and Alaska Native women who presented for primary care.

Methods: We screened 489 consecutively presenting female primary care patients aged 18 through 45 years with the General Health Questionnaire, 12-item version. A subsample (n = 234) completed the Composite International Diagnostic Interview. We examined associations between psychiatric disorders and sociodemographic variables, boarding school attendance, and psychopathology in the family of origin.

Results: The study participants had high rates of alcohol use disorders, anxiety disorders, and anxiety/depression comorbidity compared with other samples of non-American Indian/Alaska Native women in primary care settings.

Conclusions: There is a need for culturally appropriate mental health treatments and preventive services.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders
  • Emergency Service, Hospital
  • Female
  • Hospitals, Federal
  • Humans
  • Indians, North American / psychology*
  • Mental Disorders / classification
  • Mental Disorders / epidemiology
  • Mental Disorders / ethnology*
  • Middle Aged
  • New Mexico / epidemiology
  • Outpatient Clinics, Hospital
  • Prevalence
  • Primary Health Care / statistics & numerical data*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • United States
  • United States Indian Health Service
  • Women's Health*