New Studies Examine Disparities in Latino Population
Mental Health Weekly October 8, 2012
According to two recently published twin studies
one focusing on men and the other on womens health there are
significant differences in the physical and behavioral health of
individuals within three major Latino subgroups in the U.S.: Cuban-Americans,
Mexican-Americans and Puerto Rican-Americans, according to Latino
Voices-Huffington Post reported October 5.
Florida State University (FSU) researchers analyzed data
from the National Latino and Asian-American Study and found that both Puerto
Rican-American men and women reported the highest rates of smoking and overall
substance abuse including marijuana, cocaine, and prescription drugs
out of the three subgroups. Puerto Ricans also showed the highest rates
of major depression at 13.1 percent for women and 9.7 percent for men.
When assessing chronic conditions within the subgroups,
Mexican-American women showed the highest rate of diabetes, while Puerto-Rican
American women reported the highest percentage of asthma. The study found that
almost 45 percent of Cuban-American men said they considered their health to be
Excellent, followed by 37.5 percent of Puerto Rican-American men
and 32 percent of Mexican-American men. A Census Bureau report released this
month also found that in 2010 Hispanics were more likely to report
Excellent health (33.8 percent) compared to Non-Hispanic, Blacks
(29.8 percent) and Non-Hispanic, Whites (32.7 percent).
This positive perception of their overall health, and the
fact that 15.8 million Hispanics were uninsured in the U.S. in 2011, may
explain why the Bureau also reported Hispanics as the least likely racial
and ethnic group to use a medical provider, according to according to
Latino Voices-Huffington Post.
publication Mental Health Weekly