268028 Latino Seniors: A Cultural Consideration for Public Health

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Aura Whitney-Jackson, MSW , Center for Reducing Health Disparities, College of Public Health, University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, NE
Carolina Padilla , Intercultural Senior Center, Intercultural Senior Center, Omaha, NE
Renaisa S. Anthony, MD, MPH , Center for Reducing Health Disparities, University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, NE
The Hispanic/Latino population is the largest growing minority group in the US. As this population expands across the nation; it is essential that community health educators and practitioners integrate not only language but also culture into public health efforts. Latino seniors are a unique cohort representing opportunities for innovative approaches to health promotion, disease prevention and management. The public health needs of Latino seniors are vast and expand beyond language and culture but include health knowledge, beliefs and practices.

The availability of public health interventions tailored specifically to Latino seniors are limited especially in Midwestern states like Nebraska. Contrary to popular belief, Nebraska has a growing Latino population (12%). However, public health initiatives are limited by language and culture and for seniors practically non-existent. This reality resulted in the the creation of the Intercultural Senior Center located in Omaha, NE.

The Intercultural Senior Center serves over 100 Latino seniors annually. The Center offers culturally appropriate programming including public health initiatives focused on chronic disease management and leading healthy lifestyles. Moreover, the Center has an ongoing partnership with the College of Public Health at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. Through this collaborative, community leaders and academic partners utilize evidence-based approaches to improve the health of Latino seniors in a culturally competent and considerate manner. This presentation will highlight the state of Latino seniors across the nation and in Nebraska and present the challenges and overall impact of the Intercultural Senior Center on the health of participants.

Learning Areas:
Diversity and culture
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs

Learning Objectives:
1) Discuss the growing Latino senior population in the United States. 2) Describe the cultural considerations necessary for health promotion and disease prevention amongst Latino seniors. 3) Discuss the establishment of the Intercultural Senior Center in Omaha, NE for Latino Seniors. 4) Identify feasible approaches for replication.

Keywords: Latino Health, Elderly

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a public health community liaison and part of the founding members of the Intercultural Senior Center currently serving on the board.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

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.