Edward Donovan


Health Studies

Second Major



Greaney, Molly

Advisor Department





Social justice; Perception of healthcare; Health status

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 4.0 License.


Background: Increasingly, social justice is being considered as a key factor associated with health outcome. In addition, there is growing interest in exploring perception of discrimination in healthcare settings. This study explored perceptions of social justice, health care discrimination, health care status and utilization of healthcare resources. The investigators predict a significant association between the level of social justice awareness and healthcare utilization based on the hypothesis that those who are cognizant of social inequities are more likely to be informed self-advocates in healthcare settings.

Methods: First, a survey was created based on a review of existing literature. The survey assessed attitudes toward social justice, experiences of perceived discrimination the health care setting, and socio-demographics. The study was approved by the University of Rhode Island’s (URI)s institutional review board (IRB). A cross-sectional exploratory study was conducted, and URI students were recruited via email and word of mouth. Interested students provided informed consent online and then were directed to the survey via Qualtrics, an online survey tool.

Results: In total, 31 participants have completed the survey. The survey assessed attitudes toward social justice (Social Justice Scale, SJS), experiences of perceived discrimination in the healthcare setting, and socio-demographics. The data were analyzed using SPSS version 26. A T-test identified a significant difference in mean SJS score by1st-generation college student status. The significance for testing was p