Built Environment &Hispanic Elders' Health

Project: Research project

Project Details


DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): The proposed study builds on a transdisciplinary program of research to investigate the role of the built environment in risk and protection of Hispanics' health over time. Built environment is measured using a theoretically-derived coding system. This application capitalizes on an existing population-based cohort of 273 Hispanic elders in East Little Havana, 230 of who remain. The proposed research examines the impact of the built environment on elders' trajectories of physical functioning, cognitive functioning, and psychological distress, and investigates trajectories of neighborhood social behaviors and social support as potential mediators in this relationship. This study extends ongoing research in four ways: adds 48- and 60-month follow up assessments; adds a trajectory of physical functioning; proposes a novel unit of analysis for the built environment, "effective built environment" exposure; and examines the impact of a changing built environment. The rebuilding of a large number of lots in the target neighborhood is a natural experiment that permits the assessment of the impact of changes in the built environment on social processes, and behavioral and physical outcomes. Should exogenous changes in the built environment impact social processes and elders' outcomes, this would provide additional support for the hypothesis that the built environment is an important factor in risk and protection of elders' health. To address the debate about the correct built environment unit of analysis, the study investigates the strengths of alternative units of analysis. Analysis will estimate latent growth curves in a structural equation modeling framework. The impact of time-varying built environment changes on health outcomes will be estimated using both time-varying covariates in the latent growth curve framework and autoregressive models.
Effective start/end date7/1/064/30/10


  • National Institutes of Health: $476,178.00
  • National Institutes of Health: $474,609.00
  • National Institutes of Health: $422,842.00


  • Medicine(all)


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