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Racial/Ethnic predictors of falls among older adults: the health and retirement study

Journal of Aging and Health logoResearch at the University of Michigan has shown significant differences in falls risk between older adults of different ethnic origin.

Using data on falls incidence and frequency from the Health and Retirement Study from 2000 to 2010, the study followed nearly 10,500 African American, Latino and non-Hispanic older adults and concluded that older African Americans are 24% less likely to fall than white older adults.

While no definitive conclusions have been drawn to account for this, previous research suggests that it could be down to cultural differences and extended family households, which provide more support to older parents and grandparents, and therefore avoidance of fall-related scenarios and behaviours.

The study authors now plan to examine whether housing type and availability of support within one’s household lowers the risk of falling.

Read more about the study here or click here to purchase access to the full text from the Journal of Ageing and Health.

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