Improving Health-Related Quality of Life in Older African American and Non-Latino White Patients

Daniel E. Jimenez, Amy Begley, Stephen J. Bartels, Margarita Alegría, Stephen B. Thomas, Sandra C. Quinn, Charles F. Reynolds

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Objective To compare the effect of problem-solving therapy against a health-promotion intervention (dietary practices) on health-related quality of life (HRQOL) and examine if there is a differential effect on non-Latino white patients and African American patients between the two interventions. This paper also explores participant characteristics (problem-solving style and physical functioning) as potential predictors of HRQOL. Methods Secondary analysis of data from a randomized depression prevention trial involving 247 older adults (154 non-Latino white, 90 African American, 3 Asian). Participants were randomly assigned to receive either problem solving therapy for primary care (PST-PC) or coaching in healthy dietary practices (DIET). Results Both PST-PC and DIET improved HRQOL over two years and did not differ significantly from each other. African American patients in both conditions had greater improvements in mental health-related quality of life (MHRQOL) compared with non-Latino white patients. In addition, higher social problem-solving and physical functioning were predictive of improved MHRQOL. Conclusion PST-PC and DIET have the potential to improve health-related quality of life in a culturally relevant manner. Both hold promise as effective and potentially scalable interventions that could be generalized to highly disadvantaged populations in which little attention to HRQOL has been paid.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)548-558
Number of pages11
JournalAmerican Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1 2015


  • African Americans
  • health promotion
  • health-related quality of life
  • older adults
  • problem-solving therapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geriatrics and Gerontology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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