childswingReducing Health Insurance Inequities among Latino Families Raising Children with Special Health Care Needs describes how the Affordable Care Act and options available to States can make health insurance available to children with special needs. Latinos are the group most likely to be uninsured in the U.S. This is true for children also; 21% of Latino children are uninsured.

Posted by: jlenart | April 17, 2015

Community Health Worker Toolkit

toolsThe Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provides a Community Health Worker Toolkit. The toolkit describes evidence of the effectiveness of Community Health Workers, provides training materials and resources for use in the field.

US_life_expectancySee the graphs in the slide show Life Expectancy in the U.S. and How It Compares to Other Countries from the Kaiser Family Foundation. The health disparities in the U.S. account for much of the low ranking seen in the slides.

Presentation1The Minority Health Project to Eliminate Health Disparities of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill hosts their 2015 conference on February 13. Archived resources and videos from previous conferences are available.

Posted by: jlenart | January 26, 2015

Asthma & the inner city

AsthmaA recent study published in Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology reports that race, ethnicity and income are important contributors to the incidence of asthma. This differs from previous research that suggested that inner city characteristics were important contributors (including pollution, pest allergens, indoor smoke, and higher rates of premature birth).

Posted by: jlenart | December 22, 2014

Preventable deaths among Black women and men

heart attack deaths

Preventable Deaths from Heart Disease and Stroke
From the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Black women and men have a higher rate of preventable deaths by heart attack and stroke when compared to other population groups. The FDA has recently approved a blood test that “helps better predict future coronary heart disease risk…” according to a spokesperson for the FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health. The test is especially sensitive for black women.

community Improving Population Health by Working with Communities – Action Guide (2014) is organized on the following topics:

  1. Self-Assessment of Readiness to Engage in this Work
  2. Leadership
  3. Organizational Planning and Priority-Setting
  4. Community Health Needs Assessment and Asset-Mapping
  5. Prioritized Set of Health Improvement Activities
  6. Measures and Performance Targets
  7. Strategic Communication
  8. Reporting Progress on Achieving Results
  9. Scalability
  10. Sustainability

The document includes links to many community examples, tools and data sources.

womanCervical cancer is preventable. In fact, screening and vaccination can prevent 93% of cervical cancers. Inadequate screening rates are especially troubling among older women (12.6 %), Asians/Pacific Islanders (19.7%), and American Indians/Alaska Natives (16.5%). The CDC provides screening guidelines for cervial cancer screening. Screening is available at no cost via the Affordable Care Act and the CDC’s National Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program.

Posted by: jlenart | October 16, 2014

U.S. Infant Mortality Rate Worse Than 25 Countries

baby_cryingThe National Center for Health Statistics, National Vital Statistics 2014 Report, International Comparisons of Infant Mortality and Related Factors: United States and Europe, 2010 finds that the U.S. Infant Mortality rate is worse than 25 other developed nations. According to Dr. Deborah Campbell, a professor of clinical pediatrics at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, “There is a well-delineated history of racial and ethnic disparities in maternal and infant outcomes in the U.S., with black women and their infants being at greatest risk and having the highest rates of poor outcomes”. See a summary at MedlinePlus.

Posted by: jlenart | October 3, 2014

Complex patients get improved care

complexityA randomized controlled trial is underway to determine if improved coordination and support will improve outcomes and reduce health care costs for complex patients. Dr. Jeffrey Brenner is leading the effort.

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