Come out and support Cheyenne Johnson, my undergraduate advisee and winner of VCU Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program’s (UROP) Inclusive Excellence Summer Research Fellowship.
Her presentation, “The Role of Inequality on Health Care Seeking,” was inspired by taking the course, “Sex and Sexuality in the U.S.” in Fall 2016. The course linked contemporary issues about sexual identity, reproductive rights and sexual violence to “historical legacies of power and control.”
“I took a class with my mentor [Bethany Coston, Ph.D.] … and it focused on different marginalized groups,” Johnson said. “I realized that they need more mental health care and they get it less. It’s important to me that people who need care, get it.”
According to Johnson’s research, previous studies related to mental health care avoidance don’t examine the role of inequality for those who may fall into several minority identity statuses. When you consider the fact that mental health issues are often associated with other chronic medical diseases, this becomes an especially serious issue when people do not receive the care they need.
By analyzing data from the National Health Interview Survey, part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Johnson will investigate the link between variables such as demographics, mental health conditions and health insurance coverage for marginalized populations — including people of color, LGBTQ+ individuals and those affected by poverty.