Is Your Long-Term Care Organization Prepared to Meet the Needs of Hispanic People?

August 30, 2017 | Strategic Insights for Health System


​The majority of older Hispanic people in the United States say they do not have confidence that long-term care facilities will meet their needs, according to a recent survey conducted by the Associated Press and NORC Center for Public Affairs and Research. The authors conducted interviews in both Spanish and English with 1,341 people across the country age 40 years or older. About half of the respondents indicated they have faced language barriers (45%) or cultural barriers (47%) while interacting with a healthcare provider. Less than 20% of respondents said they are “extremely confident" that assisted living facilities or nursing homes can meet their needs. The poll also found that Hispanics are more likely than older Americans as a whole to say home health aides should provide services such as grocery shopping (75% of Hispanics indicated this, compared with 62% overall), transportation to doctor appointments (84% compared with 71%) and make sure bills are paid (52% compared with 33%). Hispanic people represent 8% of the American population above the age of 64, but just 5.5% of the nursing home population. Government statistics cited by the authors say that Hispanic people have longer life expectancy than non-white Hispanics and black Americans, which indicates that an increased number may soon need long-term care. Two factors contributing to the disparity, the article said, are that “social norms among Hispanic families that discourage outside care of older relatives" and “a lack of high-quality providers.

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