health disparities

Our nation’s health has improved in some areas but serious health challenges remain related to the escalating drug crisis and disparities in access to care. United Health Foundation’s 2017 America’s Health Rankings report indicates smoking prevalence, the rate of preventable hospitalizations and the percentage of uninsured Americans have declined, but the drug death rate has trended upward. In the past year, drug deaths reached the highest level recorded by America’s Health Rankings , increasing by 7%, particularly among whites. Even states that consistently rank among the healthiest in the nation saw increased mortality rates due to the drug epidemic. Over the past five years, drug death...
Rural America represents a large geographic area, a place where more than 60 million people currently reside. How large? As much as 75%of the nation’s geography is considered to be “rural and frontier.” The public health challenges of this vast area and population are significant, and often under appreciated. Rural Americans face a unique combination of factors that create significant disparities in health care including economic factors, cultural and social differences, educational limitations, and the sheer isolation of living in remote areas. These challenges are compounded by the fact that many policymakers do not understand or recognize that rural communities have unique challenges...
Health disparities occur when there is a significant difference in the burden of illness, injury, disability or mortality between demographic groups. A combination of educational, economic and environmental factors – known as social determinants – impact the health outcomes of individuals, often to the detriment of minority groups in the U.S. Contaminated housing, shortage of food stores with healthy choices, and lack of public recreational areas for exercise all contribute to higher rates of – and mortality from – heart disease, cancer and diabetes among non-Hispanic blacks, Hispanics, American Indians, Asians, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders, according to the Centers for Disease...
New leadership in the White House means new leadership in key government positions such as those at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), which houses the Transdisciplinary Collaborative Centers (TCC) for Health Disparities Research Program. TCC supports academic, community, and government coalitions that research social determinants and analyze various health- or non-health-related policies that affect health disparities. Social determinants, such as education, income, and community conditions — which are often tied to race and ethnicity — play a significant role in why certain communities experience higher rates of infant mortality , diabetes , stroke , obesity , and breast cancer...
Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs) affect over one billion of the world’s poorest people, impairing families’ health, nutrition, cognition, and even productivity at work. These parasitic and bacterial infectious diseases broadly threaten education as well as social, emotional, and physical health. The NTDs include lymphatic filariasis, trachoma, river blindness, schistosomiasis, hookworm and other intestinal worms, Chagas disease and African sleeping sickness, among others. According to the CDC, over 500,000 people die from NTDs across the globe each year, and all low-income countries suffer from at least five of these diseases simultaneously. Dr. Peter Hotez, Dean of Baylor College of...
This blog post is part of a weekly series focusing on different aspects of public health leading up to Public Health Thank You Day on Monday, November 21, 2016. Join the conversation on social media with the hashtag #PHTYD and visit www.publichealththankyouday.org for more information. LaMar Hasbrouck, M.D., MPH, is the Executive Director of the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO). The National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO) represents the nation's nearly 3,000 local governmental health departments. These city, county, metropolitan, district, and tribal departments work every day to protect and promote health and well-being for all...
This blog post is part of a weekly series focusing on different aspects of public health leading up to Public Health Thank You Day on Monday, November 21, 2016. Join the conversation on social media with the hashtag #PHTYD and visit www.publichealththankyouday.org for more information. A discussion on health disparities with Hala Madanat, Ph.D. , Director & Professor of the Graduate School of Public Health at San Diego State University: What are some of the underlying causes of health disparities for Latinos in the U.S.? Socioeconomic status, educational attainment and limited access to health care options are the primary underlying causes of health disparities among U.S. Latinos. How...
This blog post is part of a weekly series focusing on different aspects of public health leading up to Public Health Thank You Day on Monday, November 21, 2016. Join the conversation on social media with the hashtag #PHTYD and visit www.publichealththankyouday.org for more information. Professionals in public health and health care work tirelessly, day in and day out, to protect not just the community’s health but our nation’s health security. In times of crisis we work even harder to protect health, particularly for the most vulnerable members of society, including those who have special medical conditions. My agency, the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (...
This blog post is part of a weekly series focusing on different aspects of public health leading up to Public Health Thank You Day on Monday, November 21, 2016. Join the conversation on social media with the hashtag #PHTYD and visit www.publichealththankyouday.org for more information. Dr. Cicily Hampton currently serves as the Senior Director of Health Science & Policy at the Society for Public Health Education. As senior director, She leads SOPHE’s legislative and regulatory advocacy efforts to bring attention to public health, health disparities, and health education. Dr. Hampton received her Ph.D. in public policy from UNC Charlotte. In your opinion, what do you think are the most...
Excerpt of an op-ed by David Satcher, MD, PhD, honorary chairman of the African American Network Against Alzheimer’€™s, former U.S. surgeon general and Research!America’s 2007 Raymond and Beverly Sackler Award for Sustained National Leadership award winner, published in The Washington Post . Every February our society measures its progress in the march toward equality as part of Black History Month. But seldom do we discuss inequality in health, an injustice that continues to plague African Americans. A whole host of health disparities remains unaddressed, including Alz­heimer’€™s ’€” a disease that African Americans are two to three times more likely to develop than non-Hispanic whites...

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