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Health-Related Quality of Life, Gender, and Culture of Older People Users of Health Services in the Multicultural Landscape of the City of Ceuta (Spain): A Cross-Sectional Study

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Perceptions of health-related quality of life (HRQOL) are influenced by sociodemographic variables and by cultural-religious concepts of health, disease, and old age, among others. To assess the HRQOL of older people in a population with a long history of multiculturalism, the city of Ceuta (Spain), and to compare the results with Spanish reference values. A total of 372 individuals (55.4% females) were interviewed using the Spanish version of the Short Form-36 questionnaire. The subjects' mean age was 70.9 (SD = 5) years: 253 were Christians, 93 Muslims, and 26 Jews, representing the proportions in the overall population of these cultural-religious groups. HRQOL differs according to the cultural-religious affiliation, which specifically affects social and psychological dimensions. All groups obtained lower social function scores than the reference values, especially the Muslim and Jewish groups. Health care providers may consider integrating culturally sensitive interventions to improve HRQOL. © The Author(s) 2015.
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Journal of Transcultural Nursing
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DOI: 10.1177/1043659615597042
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Research
Introduction
Assessing the health status of a population involves both the
measurement of objective parameters and the evaluation of
individual subjective perceptions, as individuals have differ-
ing levels of tolerance of disease or disability (Low &
Molzahn, 2007; Molzahn, Skevington, Kalfoss, & Makaroff,
2010). Health perceptions are derived not only from physical
symptoms like pain but also from the cultural-social setting
(Dragomirecka et al., 2008; Molzahn, Kalfoss, Makaroff, &
Skevington, 2011). The evaluation of health perception is
important in monitoring the effective use of health care
resources and in highlighting specific needs that might other-
wise go unrecognized. This issue is of special interest in rela-
tion to the elderly (Casas Anguita, Repullo Labrador, &
Pereira Candel, 2001; Fletcher, Guthrie, Berg, & Hirdes,
2010). Perceptions of health-related quality of life (HRQOL)
are influenced by sociodemographic variables and by cul-
tural concepts of health, disease, and old age, among others
(Dragomirecka et al., 2008; Yosef, 2008). In multicultural
societies, the task of determining HRQOL is further compli-
cated by differing attitudes among the population toward
these same concepts, which reflect perceptions of health, the
values assigned to the body, what is permitted, and what is
forbidden (Artigas-Lelong & Bennasar-Veny, 2009).
Sometimes problems related to cultural customs arise, such
as women not wishing to be examined by male doctors or
men not wishing to be seen by female doctors. Sometimes
illness is perceived as a punishment or as the result of des-
tiny. These cultural differences can hamper diagnosis, lead to
597042TCNXXX10.1177/1043659615597042Journal of Transcultural NursingOlmedo-Alguacil et al.
research-article2015
1Nursing Department, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Granada,
Ceuta, Spain
2Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Granada, Granada, Spain
3Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Granada, Granada, Spain
Corresponding Author:
Carmen Villaverde-Gutiérrez, Faculty of Health Sciences (Physiology),
University of Granada / PTS., Avda. de la Ilustración s/n. 18016-Granada,
Spain.
Email: carmenvg@ugr.es
Health-Related Quality of Life, Gender,
and Culture of Older People Users of
Health Services in the Multicultural
Landscape of the City of Ceuta (Spain):
A Cross-Sectional Study
Maria Milagrosa Olmedo-Alguacil, PhD1,
Jesús Ramírez-Rodrigo, PhD1, Carmen Villaverde-Gutiérrez, PhD2,
Maria Angeles Sánchez-Caravaca, PhD1, Encarnación Aguilar Ferrándiz, PhD2,
and Alberto Ruiz-Villaverde, PhD3
Abstract
Introduction: Perceptions of health-related quality of life (HRQOL) are influenced by sociodemographic variables and by
cultural-religious concepts of health, disease, and old age, among others. Purpose: To assess the HRQOL of older people
in a population with a long history of multiculturalism, the city of Ceuta (Spain), and to compare the results with Spanish
reference values. Method: A total of 372 individuals (55.4% females) were interviewed using the Spanish version of the
Short Form-36 questionnaire. The subjects’ mean age was 70.9 (SD = 5) years: 253 were Christians, 93 Muslims, and 26
Jews, representing the proportions in the overall population of these cultural-religious groups. Results: HRQOL differs
according to the cultural-religious affiliation, which specifically affects social and psychological dimensions. Discussion and
Conclusions: All groups obtained lower social function scores than the reference values, especially the Muslim and Jewish
groups. Implications for Practice: Health care providers may consider integrating culturally sensitive interventions to
improve HRQOL.
Keywords
quality of life, health, older people, gender, culture
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2 Journal of Transcultural Nursing
misunderstanding, and produce lack of treatment adherence
and follow-up.
Cultural questions can have contradictory effects. On one
hand, HRQOL can be enhanced by the integration of indi-
viduals and through social cooperation networks. On the
other, cultural differences may be divisive, feeding social
imbalances that translate into differences in the conditions of
life and perceptions of its quality (Coons, Rao, Keininger, &
Hays, 2000; Molzahn et al., 2011).
Good HRQOL is generally expressed in terms of satis-
faction, contentment, contentment, happiness, and the
ability to cope with life-changing events (Casas Anguita
et al., 2001; Hawthorne et al., 2006). Most systems for
measuring HRQOL consider dimensions related to physi-
cal capacity, physical and mental state of health, family
and social networks, and the economic situation (Fries,
1980; Hickey, Barker, McGee, & O’Boyle, 2005; La
Huerta, Borrel, Rodriguez-Sanz, Pérez, & Nebot, 2004;
Villaverde-Gutiérrez et al., 2006). These dimensions are
conditioned by the specific circumstances of each subject
(Low & Molzahn, 2007), including gender and culture
(Molzahn et al., 2011; Saxena, Carlson, Billington, &
Orley, 2001). Thus, perceptions of HRQOL are affected by
the different gender roles assigned and represented within
communities, and these may produce conditions of inequal-
ity (Rohlfs et al., 2000).
Europe’s population is increasingly older and more multi-
cultural; accordingly, more research is needed on how these
aspects may influence the quality of life. The present study
of HRQOL is based on a population with a long history of
multiculturalism and an aging pattern similar to that found
elsewhere in Western Europe. For these reasons, the study
population is very appropriate for this kind of study.
The study aim was to assess the HRQOL perceptions of
persons older than 65 year, resident in the city of Ceuta
(Spain), taking into account their gender and culture/reli-
gion, and to compare these perceptions with reference values
for the general Spanish population of the same age range, in
order to identify possible areas for interventions.
Method
Research Design
A cross-sectional study was made of a representative sample
of the older population of Ceuta, who completed the Spanish
version (Alonso et al., 1998) of the Medical Outcomes Trust
Short Form-36 (SF-36) questionnaire.
Procedures
According to the population census, 7,078 persons older
than 65 years (55.5% of whom are female) are resident in
Ceuta. We conducted a stratified random sampling with
allocation proportional to the size of each stratum,
considering the six health care districts of the city and the
percentage of men and women resident in each. The sample
size of 372 subjects (44.6% males and 55.4% females) was
established by using a calculation algorithm for the esti-
mates of proportions (p;q) in a random sample from a pop-
ulation of known size (N):
,
2
22
( 1)
z Npq
n
e N z pq
=
−+
for a maximum variation in estimated proportions (e) of 5%
and a 95% confidence interval (p .05).
The stratification by cultural group was based on the
known proportions of these groups in the general population
of Ceuta. Accordingly, 68% of the study sample were
Christians, 25% Muslims, and 7% Jews. Because of the lack
of specific data on the religious affiliation of individuals,
members of each group were initially selected according to
their family name on the Public Health Register from which
the study sample was recruited. The individuals recruited
confirmed their membership of the religious-cultural group
before being included in the study. Strict confidentiality was
maintained on these and other personal data. The inclusion
criteria were 65 years or older, noninstitutionalization, and in
receipt of health care from the Ceuta Public Health Service.
The exclusion criteria were severe language difficulties or
major physical or psychological limitations hampering com-
pletion of the questionnaire. Informed consent was obtained
from all subjects. This study was approved by the research
ethics committee of the University of Granada and complied
with the usual ethical norms and applicable legislation for
this type of research.
Setting
The city of Ceuta shares a border with Morocco and is
home to people of diverse cultures and religions, belonging
to the different cultural groups that have settled in the city
throughout its history. In consequence, Ceuta forms a mul-
ticultural society, of Spanish nationality, whose primary
language is Spanish. The city extends over an area of 19.3
km2, and has a population older than 65 years of 7,078
people. Its religious and cultural groupings give a specific
identity to the different neighbourhoods, some with an
exclusively Muslim population and others exclusively
Christian (Olmedo-Alguacil, Ramírez-Rodrigo, Villaverde-
Gutiérrez, & Ruiz-Villaverde, 2014). The different commu-
nities coexist on an equal basis and may be considered an
example “multicultural citizenship” (Zapata-Barrero,
2003).
It has an equal society on descriptive terms, following a
model of equal interaction between the existing cultures,
where they all share an equal status in the public sphere, thus
coming under the category of multicultural citizenship
(Zapata-Barrero, 2003).
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Olmedo-Alguacil et al. 3
Measures
Based on the definition of HRQOL proposed by the World
Health Organization, measurement instruments have been
developed and validated for the comprehensive assessment of
individuals and their health (Coons et al., 2000; Hickey et al.,
2005; Valderas, Ferrer, & Alonso, 2005). For the purposes of
this study, we applied the SF-36, a standardized instrument of
intercultural applicability, as adapted and validated for the
Spanish population. SF-36 has proven to be effective for
assessing HRQOL in adult populations (Alonso et al., 1998;
Alonso, Prieto, & Antó, 1995; Vilagut et al., 2005; Zúñiga,
Carrillo-Jiménez, Fos, Gandek, & Medina-Moreno 1999).
For the dependent variables, scores were recorded for the
eight HRQOL dimensions of the SF-36 questionnaire, on a
scale of 0 to 100 for each dimension: physical function (PF),
physical role (PR), body pain (BP), general health (GH), vitality
(VT), social function (SF), emotional role (ER), and mental
health (MH). For the comparison of each scale score with the
Spanish reference value for this age-group (Alonso et al., 1998),
the standardized difference (z) was calculated as scale value −
reference mean value/reference standard deviation (SD).
The following independent variables were determined: sex;
age (years), weight (kg), height (cm), body mass index (BMI,
kg/m2), systolic and diastolic blood pressure (mmHg), glyce-
mia (mg/dL), and blood levels of total cholesterol (mg/dL),
triglycerides (mg/dL), high-density lipoprotein (HDL, mg/dL),
and low-density lipoprotein (LDL, mg/dL). These data were
obtained during the subjects’ most recent visit to the health
center. The data with respect to religious culture (Christian,
Muslim, or Jewish) were obtained from the subjects’ medical
records and later confirmed in person.
Data Analysis
SPSS software, Version 15.0 (SPSS, Chicago, IL) was used
for the statistical analysis, applying nonparametric tests after
application of the Kolmogorov–Smirnov test demonstrated
the distribution of the data. The Mann–Whitney test was
used to analyze differences between men and women and
between the different religious-cultural groups. When more
than two factors were considered, the Kruskal–Wallis test for
k unpaired samples was applied. Tables 1 and 2 summarize
the data for each group, and give the mean values and SD as
additional information (despite the nonapplication of para-
metric tests). p . 05 was considered significant in all tests.
Results
Sample Characteristics
The anthropometric characteristics and clinical data for the
372 individuals studied are shown in Table 1 (55.4%
females); 68% were Christians, 25% Muslims, and 7% Jews.
The mean age was 70.9 (SD = 5.03) years, and was slightly
lower for the women 70.5 (SD = 4.95) years, than for the
men 71.5 (SD = 5.09) years. Glycemia and triglyceride levels
were significantly higher and HDL cholesterol levels signifi-
cantly lower in the men. BMI and systolic blood pressure
levels were significantly higher in the Muslim group than in
the other religious/cultural groups, while levels of triglycer-
ides were significantly higher in the Christians.
Health-Related Quality of Life
The mean score for the SF-36 dimensions was 62.7 (SD =
6.5), ranging from 52.5 for general health to 71.2 for physi-
cal role (Table 2). Physical function and mental health scores
were significantly lower in the women than in the men. The
Muslims recorded significantly lower scores for general
health, vitality, social function, emotional role, and mental
health dimensions in comparison with the other two groups.
Comparison of the SF-36 scores in our sample with the
reference values for the general Spanish population of the
same age (Alonso et al., 1998), revealed lower social function
and emotional role scores for both sexes and lower body pain
and mental health scores for the females versus reference val-
ues (Figure 1). All of the religious/cultural groups recorded
lower social function scores versus the reference values.
With respect to the reference values, the Christians
recorded similar or higher values for the other dimensions,
the Muslims scored higher for physical function and physical
role but lower for all other dimensions, while the Jewish
group recorded lower scores for body pain, emotional role,
mental health, and social function (Figure 2).
Discussion
Our study sample matched the age and sex profile of the
older population of this city, according to official census
data. Most of the subjects were under medical treatment for
chronic disease, mainly cardiovascular diseases and diabe-
tes, as expected in this age-group, according to the 2011-
2012 Spanish National Health Survey (Pujol Rodríguez &
Abellán García, 2013).
Of the three cultural-religious groups, the Muslims
recorded the highest BMI (p < .001), systolic blood pressure
(p < .010) and glycemia (p < .050), implying a poorer control
of chronic conditions, in comparison with the Christians and
Jews. Unlike the case described by Yosef (2008), where the
Muslim minority in America faces severe obstacles in access-
ing the U.S. health care system, elderly Muslim residents in
Ceuta are Spanish citizens and are fully entitled to the Spanish
health care system. On the other hand, we agree with Yosef
(2008) that cultural factors arising from religious beliefs and
practices can have a profound impact on health and should be
taken into consideration when health care is provided.
Cardiovascular risk factors were greater and levels of
glycemia, triglycerides, and HDL were significantly
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4
Table 1. Sample Characteristics.
Groups Age, years BMI, kg/m2SBP, mmHg DBP, mmHg GLY, mg/dL CHOL, mg/dL TRIG, mg/dL HDL, mg/dL LDL, mg/dL
Males (n = 166), M (SD) 71.5 (5.1) 29.8 (4.3) 144.3 (23.3) 79.5 (11.9) 124.3 (52.9) 190.6 (44.5) 127.3 (67.1) 47.1 (20.4) 126.2 (45.2)
Females (n = 206), M (SD) 70.5 (4.9) 30.7 (8.7) 141.4 (23.9) 77.9 (12.1) 108.1 (30.5) 195.6 (49.0) 112.9 (61.2) 54.8 (24.7) 126.5 (39.0)
Christian (n = 253), M (SD) 70.9 (5.0) 29.0 (4.7) 139.4 (21.5) 77.9 (10.9) 112.2 (35.8) 194.4 (46.0) 124.7 (66.4) 50.7 (20.6) 126.9 (40.6)
Muslim (n = 93), M (SD) 70.6 (5.2) 33.2 (9.4) 150.6 (27.9) 80.2 (14.7) 128.0 (59.3) 188.7 (51.6) 112.1 (60.5) 53.0 (30.6) 123.6 (46.5)
Jewish (n = 26), M (SD) 72.4 (4.9) 32.5 (12.2) 146.9 (21.2) 79.6 (10.7) 100.8 (16.8) 200.8 (39.8) 93.4 (46.0) 51.8 (15.0) 130.7 (36.5)
Total (n = 372), M (SD) 70.9 (5.0) 30.3 (7.1) 142.7 (23.7) 78.6 (12.0) 115.3 (42.7) 193.4 (47.1) 119.4 (64.2) 51.4 (23.2) 126.4 (41.9)
Differences: gender p < .050 p < .010 p < .010 p < .010
Differences: culture p < .001 p < .010 p < .050 p < .050
Note. BMI = body mass index; SBP/DBP = systolic and diastolic blood pressure; GLY = glycemia; CHOL = total cholesterol; TRIG = triglycerides; HDL: high-density lipoprotein; LDL: low-density
lipoprotein.
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Olmedo-Alguacil et al. 5
higher in the male subjects (Table 1). However, the men
had a similar profile to the women in most HRQOL dimen-
sions, except for the dimensions of physical function and
mental health (Table 2). These results corroborate
Hawthorne et al. (2006) and Casas Anguita et al. (2001),
who concluded that people are reconciled to their health
problems and do not consider it to have a major impact on
their daily lives.
The scores for all dimensions were significantly lower for
the women than for the men, with respect to the Spanish ref-
erence population, while men’s perceptions of their physical
function were higher than among the reference population
and (Figure 1).
In the joint analysis of physical function and physical
role, carried out to assess the subjects’ capacity to carry
out daily tasks and activities, a convergence between the
sexes was observed (Table 2); thus, the women, despite
having a worse perception of their physical function, gave
a higher rating of their performance of daily activities.
This may because the women, as they grow older, con-
tinue to perform the same housework they have done all of
their lives, whereas the men are more likely to experience
a radical change in their daily activities following retire-
ment. The gender difference found in mental health is also
present in the Spanish population (Alonso et al., 1998;
Pujol Rodríguez & Abellán García, 2013), with women
showing more signs of anxiety, depression, and lack of
control over their emotional behavior. These results are in
line with what some authors have described as a differen-
tial characteristic of female aging, that is, the major
Table 2. Dimensions of the SF-36 (Scale 0-100).
Groups PF PR BP GH VT SF ER MH
Males (n = 166), M (SD) 69.9 (26.9) 70.6 (42.3) 60.5 (29.1) 52.9 (17.6) 56.8 (22.3) 67.3 (29.5) 66.9 (43.0) 66.3 (22.4)
Females (n = 206), M (SD) 62.9 (28.9) 71.7 (41.4) 55.5 (25.7) 52.2 (19.2) 55.2 (20.4) 66.3 (25.1) 66.8 (43.5) 61.2 (21.0)
Christian (n = 253), M (SD) 66.3 (27.6) 73.5 (40.9) 59.7 (27.3) 54.2 (18.6) 57.8 (21.2) 70.3 (27.2) 75.9 (38.6) 66.9 (21.6)
Muslim (n = 93), M (SD) 66.1 (30.0) 65.1 (43.0) 54.5 (27.3) 46.9 (17.7) 51.3 (20.6) 58.9 (25.6) 45.2 (46.0) 55.4 (19.7)
Jewish (n = 26), M (SD) 63.3 (27.9) 71.2 (44.5) 50.0 (26.0) 56.4 (16.7) 53.6 (22.1) 60.1 (24.5) 56.4 (46.9) 59.2 (22.4)
Total (n = 372), M (SD) 66.0 (28.2) 71.2 (41.8) 57.7 (27.3) 52.5 (18.5) 55.9 (21.2) 66.7 (27.1) 66.8 (43.2) 63.5 (21.7)
Differences: gender p < .050 p < .050
Differences: culture p < .010 p < .050 p < .001 p < .001 p < .001
Note. SF-36 = Short Form-36 health survey; PF = physical function; PR = physical role; BP = body pain; GH = general health; VT = vitality; SF = social
function; ER = emotional role; MH = mental health.
-1.0
-0.8
-0.6
-0.4
-0.2
0.0
0.2
0.4
0.6
PF PR BP GH VT SF ER MH
STANDARDIZED DIFFERENCES (≥ 65 YEARS)
MALES FEMALES
*
*
Figure 1. Gender differences with standardized reference values.
Note. PF = physical function; PR = physical role; BP = body pain; GH = general health; VT = vitality; SF = social function; ER = emotional role; MH =
mental health. The vertical axis represents the standard values for Spain. The different deviations are shown as positive or negative values. We highlight
the negative deviations in SF and ER for both sexes.
*p < .050.
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6 Journal of Transcultural Nursing
physical, psychological, and social changes following the
menopause (Brown, 2001; Menditto, Cassese, & Balbi,
1999). This event is believed to significantly raise the
prevalence of psychopathology in women (Villaverde-
Gutiérrez et al., 2006). The lower mental health scores
recorded by the women in our study, in comparison with
the Spanish reference population (Figure 2) suggest that
these factors have an especially marked effect on elderly
women in Ceuta.
We observed important differences in HRQOL depending
on the religious-cultural group to which the subject belonged,
especially with regard to the mental dimension of the SF-36
instrument. The poorer scores for general health and vitality
in the Muslim group are consistent with the poorer health
control evidenced by the clinical data.
The lowest values with respect to the reference values were
observed for social function, emotional role, and mental
health. The capacity to develop social activities was notably
worse in all three cultural/religious groups than in the Spanish
reference population, especially in the Muslim and Jewish
groups. This suggests that there is a need to promote a more
satisfactory social role among these groups (Fernández-
Ballesteros et al., 2004). In the Muslim group and to a lesser
extent in the Jewish and Christian groups, the scores for the
general health, vitality, social function, emotional role, and
mental health dimensions of the SF-36 survey were poorer
than those obtained by the reference Spanish population.
Perceptions of HRQOL are influenced not only by pain and
other symptoms but also by sociodemographic variables and
by cultural concepts such as health, disease, and old age
(Dragomirecka et al., 2008; Molzahn et al., 2011; Yosef, 2008).
Moreover, urban development and demographic changes over
the past few decades may have contributed to altering customs
and habits among younger generations. Such changes may
have had a negative effect on older residents, especially in the
Muslim and Jewish communities, due to their greater influence
of cultural tradition (Olmedo-Alguacil et al. 2014). These
changes may also affect the emotional and psychological
dimensions of the SF-36 survey, which would account for the
lower scores obtained by the Muslims and Jews.
Although the multicultural context of Ceuta matches the
definition of “multicultural citizenship” proposed by Zapata-
Barrero (2003), in which different cultural identities coexist
harmoniously, evidently there exists a Christian majority that
is culturally recognized by the Spanish authorities and is tra-
ditionally viewed as a dominant and culturally homogeneous
identity. Furthermore, despite their forming part of the same
system of rights and duties, Muslims do not enjoy similar
levels of freedom and equality in practice. In this respect, the
elderly are the most affected by inequalities arising from
their social relations with other cultures and from a lifetime
of harsh working conditions. These factors have a clear
impact on health, both objectively and in the subjects’ own
view, as citizens (Coons et al., 2000; Molzahn et al., 2011).
-1.0
-0.8
-0.6
-0.4
-0.2
0.0
0.2
0.4
0.6
PF PR BP GH VT SF ER MH
STANDARDIZED DIFFERENCES (≥ 65 YEARS)
CHRISTIAN MUSLIM JEWISH
**
*
*** ***
***
Figure 2. Cultural group differences with standardized references values.
Note. PF = physical function; PR = physical role; BP = body pain; GH = general health; VT = vitality; SF = social function; ER = emotional role; MH =
mental health. The vertical axis represents the standard values for Spain. Deviations are reported as positive or negative values. The Muslim and Jewish
communities show most negative deviations.
*p < .050. **p < .010. ***p < .001.
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Olmedo-Alguacil et al. 7
Limitations
The sample selection was calculated to be in proportion to the
composition and size of each cultural group. Sampling took
place for each health district, and was representative of different
neighborhoods and social strata, although specific data regard-
ing the economic status of the study subjects were not compiled.
In our opinion, life adversity in general and economic adversity
in particular have a major influence on the elderly, namely, the
subjects of this study, and these factors leave their mark in terms
of education and professional qualifications, low income in old
age, housing issues, and so on. All of these areas remain to be
examined in greater detail in subsequent research.
Conclusions
The HRQOL perceptions of older people in Ceuta differ
according to their gender and cultural-religious affiliation.
The Muslims generally presented a poorer clinical situation
than the other cultural groups, with high levels of blood pres-
sure and glycemia in many cases. By sex, the men had a
poorer health status, with higher blood pressure and glucose
levels than the women. Subjectively, all the survey dimen-
sions addressed obtained lower scores in the Muslim group,
except for physical function, which was even lower in the
Jewish group. With respect to the dimensions of body pain,
general health, vitality, social function, emotional role, and
mental health, the survey showed scores to be lower than in
the reference Spanish population, especially in the Muslim
group. Physical function and mental health scores were sig-
nificantly lower for the female subjects than for the men, and
the women also recorded lower values for body pain, emo-
tional role, and mental health than the reference values. All
religious-cultural groups, for both male and female subjects,
had lower social function scores than the reference values.
Implications for Practice
The Spanish population of Ceuta has a long history of multicul-
turalism. According to the objective data, the Muslim subjects
presented the most divergent clinical and general health param-
eters. The subjective values for HRQOL are influenced by
health and also by sociocultural concepts, which specifically
affect social and psychological dimensions. This finding
suggests that a more satisfactory social role should be played.
Various authors have highlighted the importance of social
networks to support the HRQOL of the elderly (La Huerta
et al., 2004). These results should be taken into account in
the development of policies aimed at creating specific col-
laboration spaces (Merriam & Kee, 2014) and support net-
works for all elderly residents in the city, regardless of their
religion or culture. Health care providers need to be aware of
religious and cultural factors in order to provide culturally
appropriate health promotion services for this population
(Pucci, Rech, Fermino, & Reis, 2012). Furthermore, both
doctors and nurses need to take account of social aspects in
their interventions in order to provide appropriate care and
motivate health-promoting behavior.
Declaration of Conflicting Interests
The author(s) declared no potential conflicts of interest with respect
to the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article.
Funding
The author(s) received no financial support for the research, author-
ship, and/or publication of this article.
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