Progressive and accelerated disability onset by race/ethnicity and education among late midlife and older adults.

TitleProgressive and accelerated disability onset by race/ethnicity and education among late midlife and older adults.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2012
AuthorsLatham, K
JournalJ Aging Health
Date Published2012 Dec
ISSN Number1552-6887
KeywordsBlack or African American, Disabled Persons, disease progression, Educational Status, Female, Follow-Up Studies, Health Status Disparities, Hispanic or Latino, Humans, Male, Middle Aged, Qualitative Research, Risk Assessment, Risk Factors, Severity of Illness Index, Time Factors, United States, White People

OBJECTIVE: This study explores the pace of severe disability onset with an emphasis on the role of race/ethnicity and education. More specifically, this research examines whether race/ethnicity and educational attainment are independent predictors of progressive and accelerated disability onset.

METHOD: Using the Health and Retirement Study (HRS) Waves 2 to 10 (1994-2010), a series of discrete-time Cox proportional hazards models with multiple competing events were created to ascertain whether respondents developed progressive or accelerated disability in subsequent waves.

RESULTS: Black and Hispanic respondents were at an increased risk of developing progressive disability. Respondents without a high school degree were more likely to experience progressive or accelerated disability.

DISCUSSION: Low educational attainment was a particularly strong predictor of accelerated disability onset and may represent an acute lack of resources over the life course. Race and ethnicity were important predictors of progressive disability onset, which may reflect racial/ethnic variations in the disabling process.

User Guide Notes

Endnote Keywords

Disability/Disability/Ethnicity/Education/socioeconomic factors/African American/Hispanic

Endnote ID


Alternate JournalJ Aging Health
Citation Key7757
PubMed ID22982972
PubMed Central IDPMC3484230
Grant ListR24 HD041028 / HD / NICHD NIH HHS / United States
T32 AG000221 / AG / NIA NIH HHS / United States