Examining Perceptions of Spanish Language Health Information Among Hispanics Living in the United States: A Qualitative Study Assessing Videos, Brochures, and Websites

Armando De Alba, Daniel Schober, Patrik L Johansson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: Nationally, Hispanics experience health disparities manifested as a higher prevalence of chronic diseases in comparison to non-Hispanic Whites. Factors that influence health disparities in this population include inadequate dissemination of culturally and linguistically appropriate health information. Method: Our qualitative analysis is based on data obtained from three focus groups with Spanish-speaking Hispanic adults conducted at a clinic in Nebraska. Participants were asked about their perceptions of health information in the form of videos, brochures, and websites. We followed the consolidated criteria for reporting qualitative research and used the theoretical framework of content analysis. Results: For videos, attributes associated with higher levels of trust included a friendly health professional, the logo or name of a health care institute, and a reference specifying “se habla Español.” For brochures, attributes associated with trust included use of visual aids, use of numerous colors and big font sizes, the year of printing, and a health care agency logo. For websites, characteristics associated with trust were inclusion of plain language, use of pictures and videos, and date of last update. In all focus groups, participants perceived the use of mixed English/Spanish language in health information from pamphlets and websites as unprofessional. The use of unknown governmental logos in health promotional videos and websites was perceived as untrustworthy information. Conclusions: Spanish-speaking Hispanics prefer health information supported by a health care agency or delivered by a health care professional. Health communication strategies should avoid the use of mixed English/Spanish language in sensitive information especially when combined with governmental logos.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalHealth promotion practice
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2020

Keywords

  • health disparities
  • health information
  • Hispanics
  • quality services
  • Spanish language

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Nursing (miscellaneous)

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