The Journal of the National Black Nurses Association
Acceptance of functional decline accompanying chronic illness is challenging for all elders, and even more so for African-American elders. This study examined functional status and the number, types, and acceptance of chronic conditions in 16 African-American and 46 White elders. African-American elders reported better functioning but resembled Whites in number of chronic conditions and acceptance. All African-Americans reported hypertension; 76% of Whites reported arthritis. Greater acceptance was correlated with fewer chronic conditions (r = -.23, p < .05) and better functioning (r = -.59, p < .01). Poorer functioning (i.e., functional disability) was correlated with more chronic conditions (r = .27, p < .05). Culturally sensitive interventions are needed to enhance elders' acceptance of chronic conditions and to improve their functioning.