ERIC Number: ED257616
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984-Nov
Reference Count: 0
The Informal Mental Health Networks of the Hispanic Elderly.
Starrett, Richard A.; And Others
Data obtained from interviews with 1,804 non-institutionalized Hispanic elderly (age 55 and over) were analyzed to determine what factors best predict this group's use of informal mental health support (i.e., spouse, relatives, and friends). The study was a secondary analysis of data collected in 1979-80 using a national sample stratified by geographic region. Twenty-two variables were selected from this data and classified according to the Andersen and Newman framework which conceptualizes the individual's demand for services as a function of relationships among predisposing, enabling, and need-for-care factors. Variables selected included gender, ethnicity, education, income, community and family characteristics, rural/urban residence, contact with kin, self-rated health status, and perceived number of psychological problems. Path analysis was used to determine relative importance and interrelationship of the variables. The strongest predictor of informal mental health support use was number of psychological problems (need-for-care factor), followed by age density (enabling factor) and perceived age discrimination (predisposing factor). Elderly Hispanics with more psychological problems, who lived in less age dense rural areas, and who felt more age discrimination relied more on informal mental health support than those with other characteristics. These findings have implications for mental health service delivery models for the Hispanic elderly. (JHZ)
Descriptors: Age Discrimination, Cultural Influences, Demography, Environmental Influences, Ethnic Groups, Gerontology, Health Services, Hispanic Americans, Mental Health Programs, Mexican Americans, Middle Aged Adults, Models, Older Adults, Predictor Variables, Rural Urban Differences, Social Support Groups, Sociocultural Patterns, Use Studies
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper Presented at the Annual Meeting of the Western Gerontological Society (San Antonio, TX, November 1984). For related documents, see RC 015 298-300.