Objective: The objective of this study was to examine racial-ethnic disparities in the use of antidepressants among people with private coverage and people with public insurance or no coverage. Methods: Data were from Medical Expenditure Panel Surveys (2006-2010), and logistic regression was used for the analysis. Results: Among persons with depression and private coverage, racial-ethnic minority groups were significantly less likely than non-Hispanic whites to use antidepressants (N=4,468; adjusted odds ratio [AOR]=.50, 95% confidence interval [CI]=.33-.66 for non-Hispanic blacks; AOR=.70, CI=.55-.89 for Hispanics). No significant racial-ethnic disparity in the use of antidepressants was found in Medicare (N=1,944), Medicaid (N=2,125), and uninsured populations (N=1,679). For all racial-ethnic groups, persons with no insurance coverage had much lower rates of antidepressant use than their insured counterparts. Conclusions: A wide racial-ethnic gap in the use of antidepressants existed in private coverage. As the nation continues to implement the Affordable Care Act, which will increase the number of enrollees from racial-ethnic minority groups in private plans, continuing efforts will be needed to reduce racial-ethnic disparities in the use of antidepressants.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Psychiatry and Mental health