Date of Conferral





Public Health


Gudeta Fufaa


Men are less likely than women to seek help from health services providers regarding the health issues they face. In the United States, of the various race/ethnicity populations, Black American men are least likely to seek health related help, which is reflected in the substantially higher mortality and morbidity rates in Black American men compared to other populations. Guided by the social epidemiological framework, this study examined the relationship between social network measure and health help-seeking behavior among foreign-born and U.S.-born Black American men of West African descent residing in the state of Rhode Island. A cross-sectional study design with convenience sampling method was used in executing the study. A questionnaire that was developed based on validated instruments such as the General Help-Seeking Questionnaire (GHSQ) and Social Network Index (SNI) was employed in collecting data. Ordinal logistic regression and the Chi-square test of independence were used to assess the associations between health help-seeking behavior and social networks. Findings revealed a significant relationship between social network measure and selected categories of general help-seeking measures. For example, foreign-born participants compared to their U.S-born counterparts were more likely to have a high social network size, with respect to future intent to seek help from both formal and informal help sources. The results of this study may drive social change by providing evidence that is vital to our understanding of the health-related help seeking behavior of Black American men in general and Black American men of West African descent in particular.