|Photo via the University of Houston|
The study report noted that mental illness is not more common in rural areas, but the difference is lack of access to treatment. Researcher Olivia Atherton, a professor at UH, told Murez, "It will be critical to improve access to psychological services in remote areas, and to identify how characteristics and values of rural communities can be leveraged to promote positive psychological health."
|Researcher Olivia Atherton|
(University of Houston photo)
"The study fills important gaps in the literature by showing that where people live can impact personality and well-being in adulthood," writes UH's Laurie Fickman. Atherton told her, "Given the far-reaching consequences of rural health disparities for individuals, families and communities, there is a pressing need to identify the psychological, social and structural mechanisms responsible for disparities and the ways in which to intervene upon those mechanisms to improve the health of rural Americans."