150749 Identifying Health Needs of a Minority Group in a Southern State

Tuesday, November 6, 2007: 4:30 PM

Nelson Atehortua, MD, MPH , Department of Health and Kinesiology, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX
Mary Christine Nagy, PhD , Dept. of Public Health, Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green, KY
The Hispanic/Latino population has been growing at a fast pace in Kentucky during recent years. Hispanics face a number of barriers and problems when they attempt to access different social services in the South-Central area. A needs assessment study was conducted to identify problems and difficulties as well as priorities for implementing health education, health promotion and other public health programs. A structured, validated self-administered survey instrument was used. Descriptive statistics were used to assess participant responses. Results were reviewed and validated in focus group meetings with key leaders of the community.

Demographic variables characterized the majority of respondents as either young single adult males with low educational attainment or young married adults with children. Lack of proficiency in English and Spanish were key and fundamental barriers to effective diffusion of health information. Cultural and financial barriers were also identified. Fear of discrimination, racism, and harassment at all levels was expressed, even for educational settings. Need for knowledge and information for action and prevention were detected for: cancer, alcohol/drug abuse, oral health, diabetes, and teen pregnancy. The topics prioritized for immediate interventions were mental health, domestic violence, sexually transmitted diseases, immunization, and occupational safety and health.

Respondents suggested possible solutions to overcome the problems, barriers and difficulties and prioritized topics, settings, channels, times and materials for implementing culturally and linguistically more appropriated interventions. Data will be presented descriptively and in terms of statistical associations.

Learning Objectives:
Participants who attend this session will: Recognize the main concerns, conditions, diseases and barriers that many Hispanics face when attempting to access social and health services in South Central Kentucky. State possible solutions to overcome barriers and difficulties that exist for this population. Understand the need to include the target audience in brainstorming and strategic planning activities when designing, developing, and implementing culturally and linguistically appropriate health education and health promotion programs.

Keywords: Health Disparities, Immigrants

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Any relevant financial relationships? No
Any institutionally-contracted trials related to this submission?

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.