Just in case you missed it, here’s some of the latest health disparities news, posts and reports from this past week.
MedCityNews: Mobile health called ‘powerful equalizer’ for health disparities – “They cited Pew Research Center data showing that 84 percent of low-income adults in the U.S. own or at least have access to mobile phones, and a third of all cell phone owners have looked up health information on their phones. The authors also noted that residential zip code is a stronger predictor of health status than race or even genetics, they noted. “[A]ccess to care, access to health information, and quality of life are all affected by where one lives,” Graham, Ostrowski and Sabina wrote.” >> Read more
The CT Mirror: Thousands of Obamacare customers at risk of losing coverage or subsidies – “More than 7,000 customers of Connecticut’s health insurance exchange must provide additional documentation to maintain their coverage or the tax credits that subsidize their premiums – a process that has already led to confusion and, in some cases, lost coverage or subsidies, exchange CEO Jim Wadleigh said Tuesday. By law, health insurance exchanges created under Obamacare must verify certain information about their customers, including citizenship or immigration status and income. In Connecticut, a contractor, Xerox, handles the process, but if the company is unable to verify information, customers must provide additional documentation within 90 days. If that doesn’t happen, their coverage or subsidies could be terminated.” >> Read more
Think Progress: Diversity Is Sorely Needed In Medicine. Why Is It Lacking In Certain Specialties? – “Closing persistent health disparities among women and minorities requires the increased presence of these groups as practitioners in medical specialties, a recent study suggests. The research out of Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore paints a grim, but promising, picture of the medical education landscape at a time when minorities are inching closer to being a majority of the U.S. population.” >> Read more
Health Affairs Blog: Using Innovative Community Partnerships To Address The Social Determinants of Health: Report From The Colorado Health Symposium – “Health system change is not a new idea, but the national dialogue has been primarily focused on access to and quality of health care, adding social services within clinical practice, and introducing efficiencies to the existing health care system. Similarly, great effort is expended on developing new pills, procedures, and interventions to manage and mediate the symptoms of disease. The funders of the BUILD Health Challenge see things differently. We understand that a large percentage of what makes us sick can be attributed to the effects of social, physical, and economic environments on our health and health behaviors. This includes where you live, whether you have a job, whether you have access to fresh fruits and vegetables, how much money you make, whether you face discrimination because of your race or ethnicity, whether you live under stressful conditions, and more.” >> Read more