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Perceptions of Healthy Aging among African-American and Ethiopian Elders

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This study explores healthy aging and health promotion preferences, practices and perceptions of African-American and Ethiopian older adults. Participants completed a questionnaire linked to three levels relevant to an ecological framework: individual, interpersonal and community or environmental. Results indicate that the ecological environments of African-Americans and Ethiopian senior were quite different. African-American elders’ conception of healthy aging related to preserving their independence while Ethiopian elders indicated a holistic view that included close ties with extended family members. Both groups reported high levels of spirituality and belief in God. Other similarities and differences are discussed. This study points to the importance of industrialized and developing countries understanding the needs and perfections of elders as they shape flexible and responsive policy and programs for global health promotion.

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Conflict of interest

Dr. Cheryl Waites and Dr. Durrenda Onolemhemhen declare that they have no conflict of interest.

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As there is no person or personal data appearing in the paper, there is no one from whom a permission should be obtained in order to publish personal data.

Ethical Treatment of Experimental Subjects (Animal and Human)

No animal or human studies were carried out by the authors for this article.

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Correspondence to Durrenda N. Onolemhemhen.

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Waites, C.E., Onolemhemhen, D.N. Perceptions of Healthy Aging among African-American and Ethiopian Elders. Ageing Int 39, 369–384 (2014).

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