This blog was originally written and posted by Shavon Arline, National Health Director of the NAACP.
Martin Luther King is an American hero who has become a symbol for Americans fighting for social justice. He influenced a generation to rise up and fight against inequality, even when the easier choice would have been to just give up. Most might not think of Dr. King as a health care hero, but when the civil rights movement began to address systematic inequalities in America, health care was one issue that attracted King's attention.
Communities of color continue to face obstacles in the health care setting: they are more likely to be uninsured, to be in poorer health, and to receive lower-quality care. But thanks to the new health reform law, we’ll start to see movement in closing this unacceptable gap. The Affordable Care Act has a number of provisions aimed at lessening racial and ethnic health disparities in an effort to make the health care system fairer for all Americans.
Explores the many ways the Affordable Care Act helps eliminate health disparities by improving access to health care for communities of color.
In a previous blog post, I talked about the importance of supporting health reform, not just because of the serious gains for all Americans, but also because it would help a population that is often ignored by legislators—American Indians and Alaska Natives. Despite being guaranteed health care by the U.S. government, 30 percent of American Indians and Alaska Natives are uninsured.
Two men with the same resume apply for a job. The only difference between them is that one is white and the other is black. They should have the same chance of getting that job, right?
Disparities among communities of color persist in our nation. People of color are more likely than whites to lack health insurance, to receive lower-quality care, and to experience worse health outcomes.
Did you know that African Americans are two times more likely to have diabetes than whites? Or that Latina women diagnosed with lung or breast cancer are diagnosed in later stages and have lower survival rates than white women with the same condition?
These alarming statistics are just a few of the racial and ethnic health disparities that are present in our current health care system. A big chunk of inequity can be attributed to sky-high health care costs and lack of access.
Did you know that over 4 million people in this country were born with a right to health care? Through treaties, American Indians and Alaska Natives were guaranteed the right to health care and protection from the United States government in exchange for land.
The Children’s Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act (CHIPRA): Addressing Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities
Explains several new provisions in CHIPRA that are designed to address disparities in children’s health coverage and care; includes a list of action steps for advocates.