Results of a recent survey reveal opportunities for improved cultural accommodation in long-term care, with assisted living communities perceived in a better light than nursing homes or home health in some instances but not in others.
More than one-fourth of Hispanic adults said they believe it would be very or moderately difficult for older Latinos in their area to find an assisted living community where their language is spoken by staff members, according to results of the survey from the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research.
Specifically, 29% of polled Hispanic adults aged 18 or more years said they held this belief. That’s a higher percentage than said they believe that it would be very or moderately difficult for older Latinos in their area to find a nursing home (25%) or home health (23%) where their language is spoken.
“The proportion of Hispanics among those age 65 and older is expected to grow by more than 50 percent in the coming years, making their views on experiences with long-term care critical issues,” AP-NORC Center Director Trevor Tompson said. “We found that many Hispanics have faced communication barriers when receiving care.”
The research also found that 31% of Hispanic adults polled thought it would be very or moderately difficult to find an assisted living community that provides the kinds of food they are used to. Home health and nursing homes were perceived as more challenging in this regard, with 38% and 37% of survey-takers, respectively, anticipating food-related issues in those settings.
Additionally, 24% of Hispanic older adults responding to the survey said they thought it would be very or moderately difficult to find an assisted living community with staff members who respect their religious or spiritual beliefs. Home health and nursing homes fared better in this regard, with 9% and 23% of poll participants, respectively, saying it would be very or moderately difficult to find staff members who respect their religious or spiritual beliefs in those settings.
The AP-NORC Center conducted the study with funding from the SCAN Foundation. The poll included 1,945 interviews with a nationally representative sample of Americans, including interviews with 458 Hispanic adults, 385 of them aged 40 or more years. Interviews were conducted between March 13 and April 5, and all 50 states and the District of Columbia were represented.
- 83% of polled older Hispanic people said they support employer-offered long-term care insurance plans. Of those, 48% said they prefer an opt-in program, and 48% said they prefer automatic enrollment.
- More than three-fourths of polled older Hispanic people said they would support the ability to obtain long-term care coverage through Medicare Advantage or other supplemental insurance, tax breaks for those who provide care, paid family leave and a government-administered long-term care insurance program.
“Older Hispanics don’t have a lot of confidence in the stability of current government programs or their own financial preparedness,” Tompson said.
Complete survey findings are available at www.longtermcarepoll.org.