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J Natl Med Assoc. 1988 September; 80(9): 1009–1012.
PMCID: PMC2625853

The Help-Seeking Behavior of Black Americans

A Summary of Findings from the National Survey of Black Americans


In 1977, the National Institute of Mental Health funded the National Survey of Black Americans (NSBA). The NSBA was an omnibus, nationally representative sample (N = 2,107) of adult black Americans that explored numerous issues relevant to black quality of life. One topic that has received much attention is where blacks go for help during periods of crisis. This article provides a brief summary of NSBA findings on the use of informal help, professional help, and insurance coverage. Suggestions for future research directions for those interested in the help-seeking behavior of black Americans are provided.

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