Ethnic inequalities in community rehabilitation use and psychiatric hospitalizations among people with chronic psychotic disorder

Sharon Florentin*, Paola Rosca, Shikma Keller, Inbal Reuveni, Razek Haled, Noa Yakirevich Amir, Yehuda Neumark

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: Community rehabilitation is crucial for the long-term treatment of people with chronic psychotic disorder. Ethnic minorities are less likely to seek care and have accessible treatment. This study examines whether the use of rehabilitation services and the relationship between rehabilitation and number of hospitalization days differ between Arabs and Jews. Methods: Data from the Israel National Psychiatric Case Register on 18,684 adults with schizophrenia/schizoaffective disorders hospitalized in 1963–2016 were merged with data from the national Mental Rehabilitation Register. Associations between the use of rehabilitation services and demographic and clinical characteristics were assessed through logistic regression modeling. Associations between ethnicity and duration of rehabilitation (housing or vocational) and annual hospitalization days during Period1: 2001–2009 and Period2: 2010–2016 were analyzed using ANOVA. Results: Among Jewish patients (N = 2556), 37% and 57% used rehabilitation services during Period1 and Period2, respectively, compared with 18% and 40% among Arab patients (N = 15,145) (p < 0.0001). The use of rehabilitation services was significantly higher among Jews (adjusted OR = 2.26, 95% CI 2.07–2.47). Average duration of housing and vocational rehabilitation services did not differ between Arab and Jewish patients. In both groups, duration of rehabilitation was inversely associated with annual hospitalization days. Conclusions: The ethnic disparity in the use of rehabilitation services has narrowed over time, yet remains. Although fewer Arab patients use rehabilitation, Jewish and Arab benefit similarly from the services with regard to reduced hospitalization days. To further close the ethnic gap, greater efforts must be made to expand the availability of culturally appropriate rehabilitation services for the Arab minority.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1235-1242
Number of pages8
JournalSocial Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2024

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany 2023.


  • Arabs
  • Ethnic minority
  • Jews
  • Psychiatric hospitalization
  • Rehabilitation
  • Schizophrenia


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