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Seeking mental health care from private health practitioners among individuals with alcohol dependence/abuse; results from a study in the French general population

Abstract : INTRODUCTION: Better knowledge of the factors that have an impact on pathways to mental health care may contribute greatly to organizing optimum health-care delivery. However, surveillance systems concerning alcohol problems in the French general population are suboptimal. The objectives of this study were to investigate: 1) the prevalence of mental health-care seeking in individuals with alcohol abuse/dependence in France, 2) which category of medical practitioner was consulted, and 3) psychological and socio-environmental factors associated with mental health-care seeking. METHODS: A total sample of 22,138 individuals was interviewed in a telephone survey. Individual data on alcohol dependence/abuse and other mental health disorders were collected using the Composite International Diagnosis Interview - short form. Mental health-care seeking was assessed, together with data on living conditions, deprivation, and self-reported drinking problems. Only respondents meeting criteria for alcohol dependence/abuse were included in analyses. RESULTS: Less than half of the 722 respondents with alcohol abuse/dependence had sought mental health care in the preceding 12 months, of whom 90.5% consulted their general practitioner (GP) (56.1%), or both a general practitioner and a psychiatrist (34.4%). Mental health-care seeking was associated with female sex, previous alcohol discussion with a doctor, and the presence of psychiatric comorbidities arising in the preceding 12 months. Living environment, socio-economic status, or self-reported drinking problems had no influence. DISCUSSION: A minority of people with alcohol abuse/dependence sought mental health care, mainly in relation to psychiatric comorbidities. In addition, most people consulting a GP were not referred to a psychiatrist. However, social deprivation and living in rural areas did not hinder mental health-care seeking among respondents. Adequate protocols to treat alcohol disorders could be implemented among private health-care providers to improve management of alcohol problems in France.
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https://hal.ehesp.fr/hal-02468421
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Submitted on : Wednesday, February 5, 2020 - 5:52:26 PM
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Aymery Constant, William Sherlaw, Viviane Kovess-Masféty. Seeking mental health care from private health practitioners among individuals with alcohol dependence/abuse; results from a study in the French general population. Alcohol, Elsevier Masson, 2017, 59, pp.1-6. ⟨10.1016/j.alcohol.2016.09.028⟩. ⟨hal-02468421⟩

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