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Advancing Intersectional Discrimination Measures for Health Disparities Research: Protocol for a Bilingual Mixed Methods Measurement Study


Scheim, Ayden I.; Bauer, Greta R.; Bastos, J. L.; & Poteat, Tonia (2021). Advancing Intersectional Discrimination Measures for Health Disparities Research: Protocol for a Bilingual Mixed Methods Measurement Study. JMIR Research Protocols, 10(8), e30987. PMCID: PMC8438612


BACKGROUND: Guided by intersectionality frameworks, researchers have documented health disparities at the intersection of multiple axes of social status and position, particularly race and ethnicity, gender, and sexual orientation. To advance from identifying to intervening in such intersectional health disparities, studies that examine the underlying mechanisms are required. Although much research demonstrates the negative health impacts of perceived discrimination along single axes, quantitative approaches to assessing the role of discrimination in generating intersectional health disparities remain in their infancy. Members of our team recently introduced the Intersectional Discrimination Index (InDI) to address this gap. The InDI comprises three measures of enacted (day-to-day and major) and anticipated discrimination. These attribution-free measures ask about experiences of mistreatment because of who you are. These measures show promise for intersectional health disparities research but require further validation across intersectional groups and languages. In addition, the proposal to remove attributions is controversial, and no direct comparison has ever been conducted.
OBJECTIVE: This study aims to cognitively and psychometrically evaluate the InDI in English and Spanish and determine whether attributions should be included.
METHODS: The study will draw on a preliminary validation data set and three original sequentially collected sources of data: qualitative cognitive interviews in English and Spanish with a sample purposively recruited across intersecting social status and position (gender, sexual orientation, race and ethnicity, socioeconomic status, age, and nativity); a Spanish quantitative survey (n=500; 250/500, 50% sexual and gender minorities); and an English quantitative survey (n=3000), with quota sampling by race and ethnicity (Black, Latino/a/x, and White), sexual or gender minority status, and gender.
RESULTS: The study was funded by the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities in May 2021, and data collection began in July 2021.
CONCLUSIONS: The key deliverables of the study will be bilingual measures of anticipated, day-to-day, and major discrimination validated for multiple health disparity populations using qualitative, quantitative, and mixed methods.


Reference Type

Journal Article

Year Published


Journal Title

JMIR Research Protocols


Scheim, Ayden I.
Bauer, Greta R.
Bastos, J. L.
Poteat, Tonia

Article Type





Poteat - 0000-0001-6541-3787