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Soc. Sci. 2017, 6(3), 108; doi:10.3390/socsci6030108

Disadvantaged Status and Health Matters Networks among Low-Income African American Women

1
Indiana University Network Science Institute, Indiana University—Bloomington, 1001 E State Road 45/46 Bypass, Bloomington, IN 47408, USA
2
Department of Sociology, University of Kentucky, 1515 Patterson Office Tower, Lexington, KY 40506, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 30 June 2017 / Revised: 22 August 2017 / Accepted: 28 August 2017 / Published: 9 September 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Social Networks and Mental Health)
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Abstract

A significant gap in current network research relates to understanding the factors that shape the health matters (HM) networks of marginalized, socially disadvantaged populations. This is noteworthy, given that these networks represent a critical resource for mitigating the adverse health effects of both acute and chronic strains associated with marginalized status. Further, research has suggested that the networks of such populations—especially low-income African American women—are unique, and may operate in substantively different ways than those of other groups. Using two waves of data from a sample of low-income African American women, this research identifies the demographic, health status, and health behavior measures at time one that correspond to HM network characteristics at time two, six months later. This study offers preliminary insights on the relationship between key sociodemographic and health status characteristics of low-income African American women and their HM networks, including criminal justice involvement. Findings reveal that though poorer health status and criminal justice involvement correspond to smaller health matters networks, they also correspond to more active and supportive networks. View Full-Text
Keywords: health matters networks; egocentric networks; African Americans; substance use; mental health; criminal justice status health matters networks; egocentric networks; African Americans; substance use; mental health; criminal justice status
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Pullen, E.; Oser, C. Disadvantaged Status and Health Matters Networks among Low-Income African American Women. Soc. Sci. 2017, 6, 108.

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