Gender-Related Differences Seen for Self-Reported Mental Health Conditions

Cisgender individuals have lowest probability of reporting a mental health condition or unmet mental health need

By Lori Solomon HealthDay Reporter

TUESDAY, Feb. 6, 2024 (HealthDay News) — There are large gender-related inequalities in self-reported mental health outcomes, according to a study published online in the February issue of The Lancet Public Health.

Ruth Elizabeth Watkinson, Ph.D., from University of Manchester in the United Kingdom, and colleagues reported national estimates of gender-related inequalities in self-reported mental health conditions and mental health support across 15 gender groups in England. The analysis included more than 1.5 million responses to the English General Practitioner Patient Surveys (2021 and 2022).

The researchers found that the highest probability of self-reporting a mental health condition was among nonbinary patients who were transgender (47.21 percent), followed by those who preferred not to say their cisgender or transgender identity (32.90 percent), and transgender patients who self-described their gender (35.03 percent). Probabilities were lowest among cisgender patient groups (ranging from male at 8.80 to 11.97 percent among female). Probabilities of self-reported unmet mental health needs increased for all other noncisgender groups, ranging from 19.95 percent in transgender male patients to 28.64 percent among patients who preferred not to say their gender or their cisgender or transgender identity.

“Given the existence of self-reported unmet mental health needs, we suggest that better health care system inclusivity and health care professional training are needed, alongside broader improvements in the social and legal environment for transgender, nonbinary, and gender diverse people,” the authors write.

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