Multiple Chronic Conditions and Disability among Vietnamese Older Adults: Results from the Vietnamese Aging and Care Survey (VACS)

Using data from Vietnamese-origin older immigrants/refugees in the Houston, Texas area, we assessed their overall health, chronic conditions, disability, depressive symptoms, and cognitive impairment, and examined the association between their chronic conditions and disability by comorbidity clusters. The mean age of the sample was 76 years old. The majority were married in fair/poor health with several chronic conditions and disabilities and lived with families in low-income households. Hypertension and arthritis were the most common health conditions, but cognitive impairment had the most significant impact on their disability. They experienced similar health conditions to other older Americans but had higher rates of depressive symptoms and cognitive impairment possibly due to cultural factors that may have delayed mental health treatment. Culturally and linguistically tailored services created by policymakers, healthcare professionals, and local social service agencies are recommended for the well-being of immigrants/refugees who migrated to the U.S. for a better life.