Evidence-Based Program to Reduce Fall-Related Risk Among Older Adults
A Comparison of Program Efficacy by Ethnicity
Despite rapid growth among the Hispanic population in the United States, seniors within this ethnic group are typically underrepresented in evidence-based programs. The purpose of this study is to examine the relative efficacy of A Matter of Balance/Volunteer Lay Leader Model (AMOB/VLL), an eight session fall risk prevention program, for non-Hispanic White and English-speaking Hispanic participants on key study outcomes. Data were collected from 1,233 seniors enrolled in AMOB/VLL in Texas. Compared to non-Hispanic White participants, a significantly larger proportion of Hispanic participants were younger (?2=50.23, df=3, p<0.001), had less than a high school education (?2=200.31, df=2, p<0.001), and resided in less affluent areas. From baseline to post-intervention, significant improvements in falls efficacy (t=- 9.13, df=167, p<0.001), days limited from usual activity (t=1.99, df=164, p=0.049), and unhealthy mental days (t=2.51, p=0.013) were seen among Hispanic participants. Significant improvements among nonHispanic White participants were observed for falls efficacy (t=-15.90, df=868, p<0.001). Although significant improvements were found for each ethnic group, the magnitude of improvement among Hispanic participants exceeded that of non-Hispanic Whites in some aspects. Identifying participant characteristics and positive outcomes specific to Hispanics can inform strategies to maximize program reach and effectiveness among this vulnerable and underserved population.