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Evaluation of ¡Vivir Mi Vida! to improve health and wellness of rural-dwelling, late middle-aged Latino adults: results of a feasibility and pilot study of a lifestyle intervention

  • Stacey L. Schepens Niemiec (a1), Jeanine Blanchard (a1), Cheryl L. P. Vigen (a1), Jenny Martínez (a1), Laura Guzmán (a1), Alyssa Concha (a1), Michelle Fluke (a2) and Mike Carlson (a1)...
Abstract
Aim

The aim of this study was to determine the feasibility and efficacy of a culturally tailored lifestyle intervention, ¡Vivir Mi Vida! (Live My Life!). This intervention was designed to improve the health and well-being of high risk late middle-aged Latino adults and to be implemented in a rural primary care system.

Background

Rural-dwelling Latino adults experience higher rates of chronic disease compared with their urban counterparts, a disparity exacerbated by limited access to healthcare services. Very few lifestyle interventions exist that are both culturally sensitive and compatible for delivery within a non-metropolitan primary care context.

Methods

Participants were 37 Latino, Spanish-speaking adults aged 50–64-years-old, recruited from a rural health clinic in the Antelope Valley of California. ¡Vivir Mi Vida! was delivered by a community health worker-occupational therapy team over a 16-week period. Subjective health, lifestyle factors, and cardiometabolic measures were collected pre- and post-intervention. Follow-up interviews and focus groups were held to collect information related to the subjective experiences of key stakeholders and participants.

Findings

Participants demonstrated improvements in systolic blood pressure, sodium and saturated fat intake, and numerous patient-centered outcomes ranging from increased well-being to reduced stress. Although participants were extremely satisfied with the program, stakeholders identified a number of implementation challenges. The findings suggest that a tailored lifestyle intervention led by community health workers and occupational therapists is feasible to implement in a primary care setting and can improve health outcomes in rural-dwelling, late middle-aged Latinos.

Copyright
Corresponding author
Correspondence to: Stacey L. Schepens Niemiec, Mrs. T.H. Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy, University of Southern California, 1540 Alcazar St., CHP-133, Los Angeles, CA 90089, USA. Email: schepens@usc.edu
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