Hispanic Americans have long faced challenges in U.S. healthcare. Linguistic and cultural barriers are among the social and economic factors contributing to disparate health outcomes for the community.
Following a study by the Pew Research Center, significant findings regarding healthcare challenges facing the community were revealed.
Less likely to have seen a provider
Hispanic adults are less likely than other Americans to have recently seen a healthcare provider and have a primary care provider.
Seventy percent of Hispanics reported having seen a doctor or other healthcare provider in the past year, compared to 82% among the general U.S. population.
Access to healthcare among Hispanic immigrants varies significantly based on the length of time they have lived in the U.S. Recent arrivals are less likely than those who have been in the country longer to have seen a doctor recently and to have a primary care provider.
48% of Hispanic immigrants who have been in the U.S. for a decade or less emphasized having a primary care provider, compared to 79% among those who have been in the country for over two decades.
Less likely to be insured
Hispanic Americans are less likely than individuals of other racial and ethnic backgrounds to have health insurance.
According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, in 2021, the rate of uninsured individuals among Hispanics under 65 was 19%, a relatively high percentage compared to 33% in 2010.
Age is another factor at play, as younger individuals are less likely than older ones to have recently seen a healthcare provider and to have a primary care provider.
Worse health outcomes
Hispanics reported the worst health outcomes, attributing them to occupational and structural factors.
Around 53% of Hispanic adults say one of the main reasons for their generally worse health outcomes is being more likely to work in jobs that put them at risk of health problems.
At least four in ten Hispanics also pointed to language or cultural communication issues (44%) and pre-existing health conditions (40%) as primary reasons.
Preference for Spanish-speaking providers
35% of Hispanic adults prefer a Spanish-speaking doctor or other healthcare provider for routine care, while a larger proportion, 51%, said it doesn’t matter if the doctor they see speaks the language.
In another analysis conducted by data center in 2021, Hispanic Americans make up 19% of the U.S. population, and of this percentage, only 9% are healthcare professionals and technicians.