Ethnic Differences in the Demand for Physician and Hospital Utilization among Older Adults in Major American Cities: Conspicuous Evidence of Considerable Inequalities

Reinterpreting ethnicity’s role in the prevailing behavioral model of health services usage reveals among older Americans a patient pattern of inequality favoring the Anglo-American population. Demand for hospital and physicians’ care among minority elderly is far more constrained and sensitive to health needs than it is for their Anglo-American counterparts. The findings underscore the importance of examining ethnic differences in determinants of health behavior as well as in health service utilization. Such results also appear to strengthen the grounds for developing new programs aimed at eliminating inequalities of access to health care that older members of minorities now face.

Author(s): Fredric D. Wolinsky; Benigno E. Aguirre; Lih-Jiuan Fann; Verna M. Keith; Connie L. Arnold; John C. Niederhauer; Kathy Dietrich

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Volume 67, Issue 4 (pages 412–449)
Published in 1989