Factors associated with willingness to use mental health services in Korean immigrants

Sharon Lee, Yuri Jang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Responding to the concern about underutilization of mental health services in immigrant populations, the present study explored the factors associated with Korean immigrants' willingness to use mental health services. Guided by Andersen's behavioral model, consideration was given to the role of predisposing (age, gender, marital status, education, and years in the United States), need (depressive symptoms), and enabling (health insurance, acculturation, and personal beliefs about depression) variables. The study estimated, using data from a sample of 205 Korean immigrants (ages 18-45), a logistic regression model of willingness to use mental health services. Although participants experiencing more depressive symptoms tend to be less willing to use these services (odds ratio [OR] =.89, p <.05), an increase in the odds of willingness to use them are found among women (OR=2.52, p <.01), highly acculturated individuals (OR=1.09, p <.05), and individuals who believe that depression is a medical condition (OR=4.71, p <.01). Educational interventions focused on increasing mental health literacy may be beneficial in promoting mental health services for Korean immigrants.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)196-203
Number of pages8
JournalSocial Work in Public Health
Issue number3
StatePublished - 15 Apr 2016

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.


  • Asian Americans
  • depression
  • ethnic minorities
  • health disparities
  • immigrants
  • Mental health help-seeking
  • willingness toward mental health services


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