Perceived discrimination and psychotic experiences in the English general population

Andrew Stickley, Hans Oh, Tomiki Sumiyoshi, Zui Narita, Jordan E. DeVylder, Louis Jacob, Kyle Waldman, Ai Koyanagi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Perceived discrimination has been linked to psychotic experiences (PEs). However, as yet, information is lacking on the relationship between different forms of discrimination and PEs. This study examined this association in the English general population. Methods: Nationally representative, cross-sectional data were analyzed from 7363 adults aged 16 and above that came from the Adult Psychiatric Morbidity Survey, 2007. Self-reported information was obtained on six forms of discrimination (ethnicity, sex, religious beliefs, age, physical health problems/disability, sexual orientation), while PEs were assessed with the Psychosis Screening Questionnaire (PSQ). Multivariable logistic regression analysis was used to assess associations. Results: In a fully adjusted logistic regression analysis, any discrimination was significantly associated with PEs (odds ratio [OR]: 2.47, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.75–3.48). All individual forms of discrimination were significantly associated with PEs except sexual orientation. Multiple forms of discrimination were associated with higher odds for PEs in a monotonic fashion with those experiencing ≥ 3 forms of discrimination having over 5 times higher odds for any PE. In addition, experiencing any discrimination was associated with significantly increased odds for all individual forms of PE with ORs ranging from 2.16 (95%CI: 1.40–3.35) for strange experience to 3.36 (95%CI: 1.47–7.76) for auditory hallucination. Conclusion: Different forms of discrimination are associated with PEs in the general population. As discrimination is common at the societal level, this highlights the importance of public policy and evidence-based interventions to reduce discrimination and improve population mental health.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)50-57
Number of pages8
JournalEuropean Psychiatry
StatePublished - Oct 2019


  • Delusion
  • Discrimination
  • Hallucination
  • Psychotic experience

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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