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J Telemed Telecare. 2013 Feb;19(2):70-4. doi: 10.1177/1357633X13476230. Epub 2013 Mar 20.

Access, use and completion of a brief disaster mental health intervention among Hispanics, African-Americans and Whites affected by Hurricane Ike.

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Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston SC 29425, USA.


African-Americans and Hispanics are disproportionally affected by disasters. We evaluated differences in the use and completion of a web-based mental health intervention, Disaster Recovery Web (DRW), by White, African-American and Hispanic adults in the aftermath of Hurricane Ike. Approximately one year after the hurricane, a telephone survey was carried out with adults from Galveston and Chambers counties. A total of 1249 adults participated in the survey (80% White, 14% African-American and 6% Hispanic). Mental health and mental health service utilization were assessed. Whites were more likely to have previously used the Internet to obtain general health information than African-Americans or Hispanics (P < 0.001). A logistic regression was used to identify differences in the use of the Internet intervention after controlling for covariates. There were no differences in rates of non-use and dropout attrition between Whites, African-Americans and Hispanics. Thus the findings suggest that web-based mental health interventions can be used to reach African-American, Hispanic and White adults at similar rates after a disaster.

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