The average lifespan of Americans has been steadily increasing over the years, resulting in a growing number of adults that live to be over 65 years old. Older adults are also becoming increasingly diverse: this population is expected to transform from 7.9% to 22% Hispanic/Latino by the year 2060. As this population grows and changes, it’s important to identify and address their unique health challenges, to support safely and happily growing old at home.
The lack of access to information and services in Spanish can prevent many Latinos from seeking care. Many CHW-led interventions recruit bi-lingual members of the community, allowing for correct interpretation of information, effective education and a way to address stigma. More importantly, it allows individuals who face language barriers the path to express their mental health concerns without fear of misinterpretation.
Community Health Workers/Promotores(as) de Salud are well-situated to address mental health concerns in underserved communities. They act as a bridge between affected individuals and available resources. Community Health Workers combat stigma by educating and conducting outreach on mental health within the community.