Depression among older minority groups, including Hispanics, has not been well studied. Little is known of the true rates of depression, it correlates or how well it is treated. This research is part of a series examining health status of older Hispanics using the Comprehensive Assessment and Referral Evaluation (CARE). Seven hundred older Hispanics living in Los Angeles County were studied using an area-probability sampling method. The CARE items were regrouped to reflect Diagnostic and Statistical Manual III criteria for depression and dysphoria. More than 26% were found to have a major depression or dysphoria. These affective disorders were strongly correlated with physical health status. Without physical health complications, the rate was 5.5%. A number of socioeconomic, health behavior, and family variables were related to affective state. Treatment for affective disorder appeared to be very poor for this population.