The purposes of this study were: (1) to examine the relationship between perceived barriers, self-efficacy, and sociodemographic characteristics among African American males; (2) to examine the relationship between each of the perceived barriers, self-efficacy, and care-seeking behavior while controlling for sociodemographic characteristics; and (3) to examine the relationship between each of the perceived barriers, self-efficacy, and health responsibility while controlling for sociodemographic characteristics. The model used to direct the study was a combination of three models: The Health Belief Model; The Health Promotion Model; and The Theory of Care-Seeking Behavior. Components of the model included perceived barriers to preventive health care, self-efficacy, health responsibility, and sociodemographic characteristics (age and SES). A self-selected sample of 400 African American men was surveyed using a self-report questionnaire. Two-hundred fourteen questionnaires were returned for a response rate of 54%. Data analysis procedures included bivariate correlations and hierarchial stepwise multivariate regressions using care-seeking behavior and health responsibility as dependent variables. Findings suggested that African American men in this study with a high SES index, that is, education, income, and occupational status, experienced a greater sense of self-efficacy, perceived fewer barriers to obtaining preventive services, assumed more responsibility for their own health care, and sought health care sooner than African American males with less education, income and occupational status. Age was not related to perceived barriers or self-efficacy, but significantly related to socioeconomic status. Older men demonstrated higher SES levels. African American men in this study had relatively high levels of self-efficacy. Individuals with low self-efficacy perceived barriers to preventive health care related to the site of care, provider consumer relationships, costs, inconvenience, and fear. The probability of engaging in preventive health behavior was not influenced by SES, age, self-efficacy or perceived barriers. However, probability of assuming responsibility for health was significantly influenced by age, SES, and fear.
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