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Am J Public Health. 1996 December; 86(12): 1798–1801.
PMCID: PMC1380737

Self-rated health among Hispanic vs non-Hispanic white adults: the San Luis Valley Health and Aging Study.


OBJECTIVES: This study investigated whether objective health indicators explained lower self-rated health among Hispanics compared with non-Hispanic Whites. It also considered socioeconomic and cultural explanations. METHODS: Health ratings of 429 Hispanics and 583 non-Hispanic Whites aged 20 through 74 were analyzed with logistic regression. RESULTS: Illness indicators were found to be strongly correlated with self-rated health in both ethnic groups, but after such markers were controlled for, Hispanics remained 3.6 times more likely to report fair or poor health (95% confidence interval = 2.4, 5.3). Adjustment for socioeconomic factors accounted for a portion of Hispanics' lower health rating, but the strongest explanatory factor was acculturation. CONCLUSIONS: Because of cultural and economic influences on definitions of health, ethnic differences in self-assessed health may not accurately reflected patterns resulting from objective health measurements.

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Selected References

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