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Handbook of Social Work in Health and Aging$
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Barbara Berkman and Sarah D'Ambruoso

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780195173727

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195173727.001.0001

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Older Latinos: A Mental Health Perspective

Older Latinos: A Mental Health Perspective

(p.283) 23 Older Latinos: A Mental Health Perspective
Handbook of Social Work in Health and Aging

Maria P. Aranda

Oxford University Press

The population aged 65 and older of Latino/Hispanic descent numbered 2 million in 2002 and is expected to grow to 13.4 million by the year 2050. Older Latinos/Hispanics will comprise the largest racial/ethnic minority group in this age group by the year 2028. This chapter discusses a selected group of sociodemographic and cultural indicators in the service of showing how these indicators are relevant to social work practice in the mental health arena. Alternatively stated, what role do income, education, living arrangements, physical illness and disability, culture and language play in the development of culturally competent mental health practice with older persons of Latino descent? The information presented goes beyond describing the contextual realities of older Latinos, to offer a bridge to the next stage of developing mental health services related to older adults living with psychiatric disabilities. In order to provide a more tangible discussion, the material is applied to the case of late-life depressive illness.

Keywords:   aging, elderly, Latinos, Hispanics, late-life depression, social work practice

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