Assessing the health care experiences of rural men who have sex with men (MSM)

Zachary Giano, Randolph D. Hubach, Hunter J. Meyers, Kyle R. Deboy, Joseph M. Currin, Denna L. Wheeler, Julie M. Croff

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Research investigating the health care experiences of men who have sex with men (MSM) predominately concerns urban populations. This study examines the health care experiences of MSM residing in rural Oklahoma. A total of 40 MSM (aged 21 through 66) living in rural areas were interviewed. Data were analyzed using a qualitative approach to identify emerging concepts. Three themes emerged from the data: First, participants cited cultural differences related to religious conservative ideologies as a central motif of health care experiences. Next, doctor-patient relationship quality was a contributing factor to health care experiences. Last, health care experiences were predicated on the idea of doc-tors’ knowledge of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) health issues. Certain health care aspects regarding the rural experiences of MSM that were identified differed between rural and urban MSM. Implications include support for programs that bridge the gap between practitioners and patients, while better informing both MSM and health care providers of current LGBT health issues.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)235-248
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2020


  • Health care access
  • Health care experiences
  • Men who have sex with men
  • Rural health


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