Honors College Thesis


Access and Barriers to Health Services Among Sexual and Gender Minority College Students Public Deposited

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  • College is a vital time to address both emotional and physical health, especially among at-risk populations such as sexual and gender minority college students. However, it has not always been clear whether health services on college campuses are actually reaching these students. The current study aimed to determine if sexual and gender minority students in Oregon exhibit different patterns of mental health symptoms and substance use, access to corresponding resources, and endorsement of barriers to services than their heterosexual and cisgender counterparts. Participants completed an online questionnaire that asked about sexual and gender identity, mental health and substance use symptoms, utilization of campus services, and barriers to accessing such services. It was found that sexual and gender minority students reported significantly higher levels of reported psychological distress and that bi or pansexual students demonstrated greater odds for marijuana use and misuse of prescription drugs compared to their heterosexual or cisgender counterparts. Sexual and gender minorities had greater odds of using on-campus psychological services. Among those who did not use any services, sexual and gender minorities reported more barriers to obtaining these services than their cisgender and heterosexual counterparts. These findings support the need for identity specific mental health and substance use support services on college campuses in order to address these disparities. Key Words: Sexual and gender minority, mental health, substance use, disparities
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