Date Thesis Awarded
Honors Thesis -- Access Restricted On-Campus Only
Bachelors of Science (BS)
Kinesiology & Health Sciences
Ashleigh Everhardt Queen
Low-income populations are subject to various barriers in attempting to access healthcare. However, this process is further complicated when seeking out mental health care, due to concerns of discrimination and mistrust. As a result, Community Health Workers (CHWs) are implemented into healthcare networks for marginalized populations in an effort to ease the process of finding appropriate resources and services for their needs. Twelve clients of CHWs in Richmond’s public housing communities who sought out care for mental health, substance abuse, and/or domestic violence between 2016 and 2020 were interviewed over the phone. Predominantly, clients cited the shared background and experiences of their CHW as a factor that made them feel comfortable discussing sensitive, emotional topics. However, some clients could not recall seeing a CHW in the past and did not recognize the resource center in their neighborhood. Additionally, the majority of participants regarded the COVID-19 pandemic as another barrier to accessing care – specifically by increasing wait times and decreasing responsiveness from healthcare services. Moving forward, it may be beneficial to decrease client load on CHWs or place more specificity on their role, allowing them the opportunity to better serve clients long-term.
Hall, Carter, "Emotional Wellbeing in Richmond Public Housing: The Role of Community Health Workers in Accessing Care" (2023). Undergraduate Honors Theses. William & Mary. Paper 1924.
Available for download on Monday, May 04, 2026
On-Campus Access Only