Health-related quality of life for rural American Indians in New Mexico.
OBJECTIVES: To determine health-related quality of life for rural American Indians using an economical telephone surveillance system.
DESIGN: We interviewed 618 American Indians by telephone about health-related quality of life using an adaptation of the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System questionnaire.
RESULTS: A smaller proportion of rural New Mexico American Indians (50.7%) reported their general health as 'excellent' or 'very good' compared to the overall New Mexico (58.2%) and US populations (57.9%). American Indians reported a mental health limitation more frequently than the New Mexico and the US populations. However, 13% fewer rural New Mexico American Indians reported a limitation in usual activities. Most limitations were due to musculoskeletal conditions or diabetes mellitus. Survey respondents were found to be representative of the rural American Indian population as reported by the 1990 US Census Bureau by tribal group affiliation and age, but were not representative by income, education, and gender.
CONCLUSIONS: Health-related quality of life for rural American Indians differs little from that of other New Mexicans and the general US population; however, when physical and mental health was rated as poor, fewer American Indians reported a limitation in usual activities. A telephone survey focusing on New Mexico American Indians is an efficient method by which to conduct surveillance of health-related quality of life.
Gilliland, F D; R Mahler; and S M Davis.
"Health-related quality of life for rural American Indians in New Mexico.."