PUERTO RICANS: Groups Find Fault With National Study
Concerned that the "information could be used to stereotype them," Puerto Rican organizations are taking issue with a federal study released last week that found that Puerto Ricans "reported being sick more often that Mexican Americans, Cuban American and others of Hispanic decent," the AP/Las Vegas Sun reports. The National Center for Health Statistics report, which analyzed surveys of more than 60,000 Hispanics taken between 1992 and 1995, found that Puerto Ricans had "more doctors visits, hospital stays and sick days off from work and school than other Hispanics." Raul Duany, president of the Puerto Rican Professional Association of South Florida, said he was worried that the findings could lead to increases in Puerto Ricans' insurance premiums or make them "less attractive" employees. "We commend their initiative to actually recognize that there are different Hispanic subgroups. Our concern is the long term implications," Duany said. The National Coalition for Puerto Rican Women and the Puerto Rican Chamber of Commerce joined Duany's group in criticizing the report, arguing that the researchers failed to include other factors, such as social and economic status, geographic information and access to health care. However, the study's author said the report was only a preliminary look and the data should not be used to draw widespread conclusions (3/1).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.