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Qual Life Res. 2013 Oct;22(8):2105-12. doi: 10.1007/s11136-013-0349-1. Epub 2013 Jan 17.

Understanding the impact of racial self-identification on perceptions of health-related quality of life: a multi-group analysis.

Author information

  • 1School of Social Work, Columbia University, New York, NY, USA, vr2178@columbia.edu.



Multiple group analysis is used to determine whether the health-related quality of life (HRQoL) model developed by Wilson and Cleary (1995) is equivalent across racial categories. Using data from the Centers for Disease Control's Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, this study compares racial groups (African American vs. White; Hispanic vs. White) to determine whether they perceive HRQoL similarly.


This secondary data analysis of 2007 New York State Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System data (n = 6,103 cases) uses the multi-group analysis function in structural equation modeling to test for equivalency across the named ethnic/racial groups.


The White subsample achieved good fit indices and produced significant estimates for all structural components of the hypothesized model. Noteworthy differences, however, were found for the African American and Hispanic samples. In both cases, the data failed to support the Wilson and Cleary model as operationalized. This was most pronounced in the Hispanic versus White comparison, where the findings suggest fundamental differences between the two groups at the basic concept measurement level.


The substantial discrepancies that the findings suggest for the subsamples call into question not only the structural integrity of the Wilson and Cleary model for minorities but also suggest that racial groups, particularly Hispanics, may perceive concepts of health-related quality of life differently than Whites.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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