Document Type

Capstone Experience

Graduation Date


Degree Name

Master of Public Health



First Committee Member

Patrick Maloney, PhD, MPH

Second Committee Member

Nicole Kolm-Valdivia, PhD, MPH, CHES

Third Committee Member

Anthony Blake, MPH


Objectives. To examine the association between frequency of marijuana use among informal caregivers of persons with dementia (PWD) and other health conditions compared to non-caregivers in 20 U.S. states.

Methods. We used complex survey data from the optional modules Caregiver and Marijuana Use of the 2021 BRFSS survey. Univariate and bivariate analyses were performed to determine the frequency and distribution of sample population characteristics and calculate crude relationships. Ordinal logistic regression modelled the relationship between the three-level outcome and covariates.

Results. Frequency of marijuana use and caregiver status were not associated. There was no difference in increased use among individuals who take care of PWD or other health conditions, compared to non-caregivers. Being male, young, and Black were predictors for increased marijuana use, as were having poor mental health days, at least one chronic condition, and recent substance use.

Conclusions. Associations between marijuana use and mental health and other substance use warrant future examination as a combination of these high-risk factors pose potential public health problems, particularly among younger adults and other populations at risk for frequent marijuana use.

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