Health Promotion among Diverse Populations
Grand Canyon University
Health Promotion among Diverse Populations
The United States has a very diverse population. One of the largest and fastest growing minority groups is the Hispanic population, which is comprised of different nationalities, including Mexicans, Puerto Ricans, Cubans, Dominicans, Salvadorians, Guatemalans and Columbians (Hispanic, 2015). In 2013 the U.S. Census Bureau estimated that the Hispanic population represented approximately 17% of the total U.S. population (Hispanic, 2015). In further the current health status, health promotion, health disparities and an example of health promotion prevention, will be discussed for the Hispanic minority group.
Hispanic Current Health Status
The current health status varies slightly between the different Hispanic nationalities but they all have a similar mortality in common. The top leading causes of death amongst the Hispanic race includes cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, chronic liver disease, cirrhosis, chronic lower respiratory disease, stroke, unintentional injuries, kidney disease, influenza and pneumonia (Hispanic, 2015). Diabetes is most common amongst the Hispanic population, when compared to white, non- Hispanic and Asian adults (Hispanic, 2015).
Hispanic Health Promotion
An important process in promoting change in the way the Hispanic population receive healthcare is by reducing the uninsured population, education on being better healthcare consumers, form partnerships with the Hispanic communities and increase the number of skilled Hispanic professionals in the healthcare field (Strategies For Improving, 2006). Some strategies to provide better access to healthcare for the Hispanic population are increasing access to community resources, free health clinics, expanding access to insurance through the market place. Through education this population can become more aware of preventative healthcare benefits. Increase compliance, comfort and understanding by increasing the number of skilled Hispanic healthcare professionals. Hispanic patients treated by a Hispanic physician or healthcare professional are more likely to remain compliant with treatment, due to feeling comfortable to ask more questions and have a better understanding of their health, without a language barrier (Strategies For Improving, 2006).
Hispanic Health Disparities
There are many health disparities for the Hispanic population, many of which prevent this population from obtaining proper health care. These disparities include socioeconomic status, education level, language barriers and cultural beliefs. When compared to other ethnic groups, Hispanic adults have a higher incidence of having an income less than federal poverty level, lack of high school education or unemployed. This group is also more likely to be employed in high-risk occupations, which can also have an impact on their health (Hispanic, 2015). It has been reported that about 29% of the Hispanic population is without insurance (Hispanic, 2015). This can be a major deterrent to seeking out healthcare when needed. Many families feel they do not have sufficient funds to afford the medical bills, if treatment is obtained. Sometimes they may feel that if they seek out medical treatment they may not be able to pay their bills, rent or feed their family. By delaying medical treatment or routine preventative exams, there may be an increase in medical cost once treatment is sought out.
The level of education and potential language barriers for the Hispanic population is another health disparity. Many Hispanic individuals do not pursue a formal education or learn the English language, due to a lack of financial means. A Hispanic individual may fear doctor visits due to an inability to communicate effectively, comprehend disease processes or comprehend teaching material (Galarraga, 2007). Some potential barriers for Hispanics visiting the doctor’s office include, tend to omit medications, miss appointments and may not ask questions regarding their health (Strategies For Improving, 2006).
The Hispanic culture has a strong belief of having a strong family bond and religious beliefs. Often because of the Hispanic culture having such a strong family bond, the children come first and are more likely to receive healthcare treatment, which can lead to the parents neglecting their own health. Hispanic patients typically involve their family in decision making and take great consideration in any decisions made (Galarraga, 2007).
Prevention is important, but education is the key to helping individuals reach a better understanding of what a healthy lifestyle is and how to make positive changes. The Hispanic culture is comfortable utilizing their community resources, churches, and family and support groups. Many Hispanics utilize emergency medical services as their primary care, this ends up being a very expensive alternative to using a primary physicians office (Strategies For Improving, 2006). Many Hispanics do not know there are other alternative options to using the emergency room. It is important for Hispanics to be educated by health care works on the use of low cost clinics with Spanish speaking employees available. Other primary prevention includes health screenings, genetic screenings and immunizations.
Secondary prevention comes into effect once a disease has been diagnosed and includes the prevention of spreading the disease or prevention of complications. The key is early diagnosis, treatment and shortening the duration of illness, if possible. As an example a sexually transmitted disease, this level of prevention includes promoting interruption of the spread of the disease through abstinence, using protective devices and testing others potentially exposed and inhibiting the complications, by providing treatment.
Tertiary prevention focuses on the individual working toward returning to baseline functioning from before disease diagnosis.
In conclusion, in order to promote health among the Hispanic populations there are some different resources that can be accessed. Healthcare works have a key role in increasing education and health promotion. It is important to provide better education and help the Hispanic population though, increasing Hispanic healthcare workers, improve access to insurance, increase patient understanding and comprehension. By implementing better healthcare practices and expanding the Hispanic resources through health promotion, their current health status can start to improve and there health disparities can start to decrease.
Galarraga, J. (2007). Hispanic-American Culture and Health. Retrieved September 5, 2015, from http://www.case.edu/…/Hispanic_Healthcare.p…
Hispanic or Latino Populations. (2015). Retrieved September 6, 2015, from http://www.cdc.gov/minorityhealth/populations/REMP/hispanic.html
Strategies For Improving Latino Healthcare In America. (2006). Retrieved September 6, 2015, from http://www.borderhealth.org/…/res_64…
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