Publications by authors named "Thomas M Toomey"

2 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Health Needs and Experiences of a LGBT Population in Georgia and South Carolina.

J Homosex 2019 10;66(7):989-1013. Epub 2018 Aug 10.

a Department of Psychiatry and Health Behavior , Medical College of Georgia, Augusta University , Augusta , Georgia , USA.

The 2016 Municipal Equality Index rated Augusta, the largest city in the Central Savannah River Area (CSRA), as one of the least lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) friendly cities in America. To understand the context of our region in relation to LGBT wellness, we conducted the first LGBT health needs assessment of the CSRA, assessing physical and mental health status and health care needs and experiences in the community. Participants (N = 436) were recruited using venue and snowball sampling and completed an anonymous online survey. Overall, the health problems experienced (i.e., obesity, depression) were not uniformly experienced across sexual orientation and gender identity; some groups experienced significantly higher rates of these conditions than others. Similarly, transgender individuals in particular reported higher rates of negative experiences with health care providers. Regional and national dissemination of these findings is critical to reducing health disparities and improving wellness of our local LGBT community.
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April 2019

Mental Health Correlates of Cigarette Use in LGBT Individuals in the Southeastern United States.

Subst Use Misuse 2018 05 5;53(6):891-900. Epub 2018 Jan 5.

a Department of Psychiatry and Health Behavior , Augusta University , Augusta , Georgia , USA.

Background: Smoking prevalence for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) individuals is higher than for heterosexual, cisgender individuals. Elevated smoking rates have been linked to psychiatric comorbidities, substance use, poverty, low education levels, and stress.

Objectives: This study examined mental health (MH) correlates of cigarette use in LGBT individuals residing in a metropolitan area in the southeastern United States.

Methods: Participants were 335 individuals from an LGBT health needs assessment (mean age 34.7; SD = 13.5; 63% gay/lesbian; 66% Caucasian; 81% cisgender). Demographics, current/past psychiatric diagnoses, number of poor MH days in the last 30, the Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ) 2 depression screener, the Three-Item Loneliness Scale, and frequency of cigarette use were included. Analyses included bivariate correlations, analysis of variance (ANOVA), and regression.

Results: Multiple demographic and MH factors were associated with smoker status and frequency of smoking. A logistic regression indicated that lower education and bipolar disorder were most strongly associated with being a smoker. For smokers, a hierarchical regression model including demographic and MH variables accounted for 17.6% of the variance in frequency of cigarette use. Only education, bipolar disorder, and the number of poor MH days were significant contributors in the overall model. Conclusions/Importance: Less education, bipolar disorder, and recurrent poor MH increase LGBT vulnerability to cigarette use. Access to LGBT-competent MH providers who can address culturally specific factors in tobacco cessation is crucial to reducing this health disparities.
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May 2018