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Health Disparities Round-Up – July 17, 2015

Just in case you missed it, here’s some of the latest health disparities news, posts and reports from this past week.

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation: How Children’s Social Competence Impacts Their Well-Being in Adulthood – “A 20-year retrospective study, funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and published in the July 2015 issue of the American Journal of Public Health, suggests that kindergarten students who are more inclined to exhibit “social competence” traits—such sharing, cooperating, or helping other kids—may be more likely to attain higher education and well-paying jobs. In contrast, students who exhibit weaker social competency skills may be more likely to drop out of high school, abuse drugs and alcohol, and need government assistance. This brief provides an overview and major findings from this study and implications for further action.” >> Read more

Health IT Analytics: How Healthcare Big Data Analytics Drives Systematic Improvement – “Big data is everywhere. Whether you’re a fan of the term or not, the impact of these messy, massive data sets proliferating at an unprecedented pace is readily apparent in the healthcare industry, where access to timely, accurate information truly is a matter of life and death. Healthcare organizations have always had an interest in harnessing the potential of big data analytics in pursuit of new treatment strategies and better patient outcomes, and that curiosity has only intensified as EHRs, health information exchanges, and data repositories bring staggering new capabilities to informaticists and data scientists.” >> Read more

The Verge: Health insurance coverage among black and Hispanic Americans saw some big improvements last year – “The proportion of black and Hispanic-Americans without health insurance was greatly reduced in 2014, the first year of the Affordable Care Act, according to a CDC report released today. The US also saw a significant reduction in the proportion of Hispanics who didn’t obtain medical care due to the high cost of that care. Taken together, the findings indicate that the US made important strides last year in terms of reducing the racial disparities that have plagued the country’s health care system for so long — even if tremendous gaps remain.” >> Read more

CT Mirror: CT insurers lower rate hike requests on Obamacare plans – “The four companies selling individual health plans through Connecticut’s health insurance exchange have revised their proposals to raise rates in 2016, seeking lower increases than initially proposed. In filings with state regulators, the companies cited varying reasons – ranging from lower claims costs to the expectation of covering a narrower network of health care providers.” >> Read more

Salud Today: Insulin Patches Could Make Life Easier for Millions of Latinos – The University of North Carolina and North Carolina State University have developed and currently are testing an insulin patch that could soon replace the painful insulin injections, Univision reports. More than 16 percent of Latinos in the U.S. suffers from diabetes and could benefit from insulin patches.” >> Read more

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation: What’s Law Got to Do With It? How Medical-Legal Partnerships Reduce Barriers to Health – “A lawyer as part of the health care team? It’s not as strange as it sounds. Many of the social conditions that impede health, such as housing, education, employment, food and insurance, can be traced to laws unfairly applied or under-enforced, often leading to the improper denial of services and benefits designed to help vulnerable people. There are eight thousand civil legal aid lawyers in the U.S., and much of their work is directly related to improving health. They ensure access to food, health benefits and insurance for their clients. By fighting for better housing conditions and preventing evictions, they help create healthier physical environments. They help keep families safe and stable by establishing guardianships.” >> Read more

About Gina Hernandez

Gina Hernandez is a Program Director at the Society for New Communications Research and has worked 7+ years in the digital communications field. Prior to joining the Society for New Communications Research, Gina worked at re: Imagine group, where she where she led media and blogger outreach and agency research.

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