Dominicans are the largest migrant community in Puerto Rico, yet understudied. We compared risk factors and health conditions of Dominicans versus Puerto Ricans (PRs). Cross-sectional survey of Dominicans (n = 55) and PRs (n = 310) aged 30–75 years, assessed with validated questionnaires and standardized anthropometric measurements. Significantly, more Dominicans than PRs had attained <8th grade education (37.7 vs. 8.0%), reported household income ≤$10,000 (76.1 vs. 56.9%), lacked health insurance (19.6 vs. 5.5%), and reported food insecurity (24.5 vs. 12.1%). They spent fewer hours/day watching television (2.9 vs. 3.8), and were less likely to smoke (7.6 vs. 19.6%). Medically-diagnosed depression was lower among Dominicans than PRs (9.6 vs. 23.0%); questionnaire-based high depressive symptomatology was similar (47.9 vs. 52.8%). Dominicans living in Puerto Rico had more socioeconomic risk factors but healthier lifestyle behaviors and lower prevalence of medically-diagnosed depression than PRs. Tailored approaches are needed to ameliorate disparities in each ethnic group.
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The Puerto Rico Assessment of Diet, Lifestyle, and Diseases study was successful thanks to the contribution from all our interviewers, the staff at the partner clinics, and the participants. This study was funded by private anonymous donations to Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, a Dry Bean Health Research Program Incentive Award from the Northarvest Bean Growers Association, and institutional funds from Fundación de Investigación. Additional funding was received from a Mentored Career Development Award to Promote Faculty Diversity in Biomedical Research (K01-HL120951) from the NIH-National Heart Lung and Blood Institute. MT was funded by the National Council of Science and Technology (CONACyT, Mexico).
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Tamez, M., Ríos-Bedoya, C.F., Rodríguez-Orengo, J.F. et al. Sociodemographic and Lifestyle Factors, and Health Conditions of Dominican Adults Living in Puerto Rico. J Immigrant Minority Health 20, 1085–1093 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10903-017-0637-x
- Puerto Ricans
- Health disparities
- Chronic diseases
- Minority health