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Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2017 Jul 25;14(8). pii: E835. doi: 10.3390/ijerph14080835.

Health Inequities among Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Adults in North Carolina, 2011-2014.

Author information

1
Department of Public Health, Brody School of Medicine, East Carolina University, Greenville, NC 27834, USA. barnhillm14@ecualumni.ecu.edu.
2
Department of Health Education and Promotion, College of Health and Human Performance, East Carolina University, Greenville, NC 27858, USA. leejose14@ecu.edu.
3
Department of Public Health, Brody School of Medicine, East Carolina University, Greenville, NC 27834, USA. raffertya@ecu.edu.

Abstract

Inequalities in health have been identified for lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB) populations nationally. Policies in the U.S. South offer fewer protections for LGB people than in other regions, yet, limited data exist for this region. North Carolina (NC) BRFSS data from 2011 to 2014 were combined (LGB n = 604; heterosexual n = 33,170) and analyzed using SAS survey procedures to estimate health characteristics by sexual orientation within gender. Many examined indicators were not different by sexual orientation, however, other results were significant and consistent with findings from state population surveys in other regions of the country. Both genders showed inequities in mental health, having over twice the odds of five or more poor mental health days in the past month and of having ever been diagnosed with a depressive disorder. Sexual minority women had higher odds compared with heterosexual women for ever having smoked cigarettes, current smoking, exposure to secondhand smoke both in the workplace and at home, and both alcohol risk factors, binge and heavy drinking. Being part of the LGB population in NC is associated with worse health. The implementation of anti-LGB policies in the NC warrants ongoing monitoring of LGB health inequities in NC and in other southeastern states for potential effects on the health and well-being of sexual minorities.

KEYWORDS:

Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System; North Carolina; health status disparities; homosexuality; public health surveillance; sexual minority

PMID:
28757566
PMCID:
PMC5580539
DOI:
10.3390/ijerph14080835
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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