Community as a source of health in three racial/ethnic communities in Oregon: a qualitative study Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/articles/k930bz85b

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  • BACKGROUND: A 2011 report by the Oregon Health Authority and the Department of Human Services documented disparities in its Latino and American Indian populations on multiple individual-level health indicators. However, research is lacking on the social contexts in which Latinos and American Indians in Oregon live and how these environments influence the health of communities as a whole. To help fill this gap, this study sought to contextualize the social environments that influence the health of Latinos and American Indian residents in three Oregon communities. METHODS: Guided by an ecological framework, we conducted one-time semi-structured qualitative interviews with 26 study participants to identify the prominent health-related issues in the communities and to examine the factors that study participants perceived as enabling or inhibiting healthy lifestyles of community residents. We used a grounded theory approach to perform content and thematic analyses of the data. RESULTS: Study participants identified preventable chronic conditions, such as diabetes, obesity, and hypertension, as the most pressing health concerns in their communities. Results showed that traditional and cultural activities and strong family and community cohesion were viewed as facilitators of good community health. Poverty, safety concerns, insufficient community resources, and discrimination were perceived as barriers to community health. Three themes emerged from the thematic analyses: social connectedness is integral to health; trauma has an ongoing negative impact on health; and invisibility of residents in the community underlies poor health. CONCLUSIONS: This study’s findings provide insight to the social contexts which operate in the lives of some Latinos and American Indians in Oregon. While participants identified community-level factors as important to health, they focused more on the social connections of individuals to each other and the relationships that residents have with their communities at-large. Our findings may also help to explain how the intra- and inter-personal levels, the community/institutional level, and the macro level/public policy contexts can serve to influence health in these communities. For example, trauma and invisibility are not routinely examined in community health assessment and improvement planning activities; nonetheless, these factors appear to be at play affecting the health of residents.
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  • Mendez-Luck, C. A., Bethel, J. W., Goins, R. T., Schure, M. B., & McDermott, E. (2015). Community as a source of health in three racial/ethnic communities in Oregon: a qualitative study. BMC Public Health, 15, 127. doi:10.1186/s12889-015-1462-6
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  • description.provenance : Approved for entry into archive by Erin Clark(erin.clark@oregonstate.edu) on 2015-03-27T16:36:08Z (GMT) No. of bitstreams: 2 license_rdf: 1370 bytes, checksum: cd1af5ab51bcc7a5280cf305303530e9 (MD5) Mendez-LuckCarolynPHHSCommunitySourceHealth.pdf: 623173 bytes, checksum: 1da57af86b71a2f5375af2794a50f07d (MD5)
  • description.provenance : Made available in DSpace on 2015-03-27T16:36:08Z (GMT). No. of bitstreams: 2 license_rdf: 1370 bytes, checksum: cd1af5ab51bcc7a5280cf305303530e9 (MD5) Mendez-LuckCarolynPHHSCommunitySourceHealth.pdf: 623173 bytes, checksum: 1da57af86b71a2f5375af2794a50f07d (MD5) Previous issue date: 2015-02-12
  • description.provenance : Submitted by Erin Clark (erin.clark@oregonstate.edu) on 2015-03-27T16:35:51Z No. of bitstreams: 2 license_rdf: 1370 bytes, checksum: cd1af5ab51bcc7a5280cf305303530e9 (MD5) Mendez-LuckCarolynPHHSCommunitySourceHealth.pdf: 623173 bytes, checksum: 1da57af86b71a2f5375af2794a50f07d (MD5)

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