Display Settings:

Format

Send to:

Choose Destination
Med Care. 2004 Apr;42(4):313-20.

Hispanic healthcare disparities: challenging the myth of a monolithic Hispanic population.

Author information

  • 1Office of Performance Accountability, Resources, and Technology, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, Maryland 20850, USA. rweinick@ahrq.gov

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Hispanic Americans are often treated as a monolithic ethnic group with a single pattern of healthcare utilization. However, there could be considerable differences within this population. We examine the association between use of healthcare services and Hispanic Americans'country of ancestry or origin, language of interview, and length of time lived in the United States.

METHODS:

Our data come from the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey, a nationally representative survey of healthcare use and expenditures. Descriptive statistics and logistic regression results are presented.

RESULTS:

Multivariate models show that Mexicans and Cubans are less likely, and Puerto Ricans more likely, to have any emergency department visits than non-Hispanic whites. Mexicans, Central American/Caribbeans, and South Americans are less likely to have any prescription medications. All Hispanics are less likely to have any ambulatory visits and prescription medications, whereas only those with a Spanish-language interview are less likely to have emergency department visits and inpatient admissions. More recent immigrants are less likely to have any ambulatory care or emergency department visits, whereas all Hispanics born outside the United States are less likely to have any prescription medications.

CONCLUSIONS:

The Hispanic population is composed of many different groups with diverse health needs and different barriers to accessing care. Misconceptions of Hispanics as a monolithic population lacking within-group diversity could function as a barrier to efforts aimed at providing appropriate care to Hispanic persons and could be 1 factor contributing to inequalities in the availability, use, and quality of healthcare services in this population.

PMID:
15076807
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

0 comments
How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Lippincott Williams & Wilkins
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk