Health Disparity and Structural Violence: How Fear Undermines Health Among Immigrants at Risk for Diabetes.
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Diabetes is a national health problem, and the burden of the disease and its consequences particularly affect Hispanics. While social determinants of health models have improved our conceptualization of how certain contexts and environments influence an individual's ability to make healthy choices, a structural violence framework transcends traditional uni-dimensional analysis. Thus, a structural violence approach is capable of revealing dynamics of social practices that operate across multiple dimensions of people's lives in ways that may not immediately appear related to health. Working with a Hispanic immigrant community in Albuquerque, New Mexico, we demonstrate how structural forces simultaneously directly inhibit access to appropriate healthcare services and create fear among immigrants, acting to further undermine health and nurture disparity. Although fear is not normally directly associated with diabetes health outcomes, in the community where we conducted this study participant narratives discussed fear and health as interconnected.