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Health Disparities Roundup – Friday, March 30, 2012

Here’s some of the latest health disparities news, posts and reports from this past week.

Huffington Post: A Human-Rights Lens on the Affordable Care Act – “It is well-documented that racial and ethnic minorities disproportionately lack health insurance. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that approximately two of every five persons of Hispanic ethnicity and one of five non-Hispanic blacks were classified as uninsured during both 2004 and 2008. Likewise, the number of people of color who live at the poverty level and qualify for Medicaid is disproportionate to their representation in the general population. With the ACA, Congress made health care coverage available to millions of low-income individuals, mitigating racial disparities in access to health care within the United States. Indeed, the Congressional Record is replete with references to the enormous impact that the ACA will have on helping racial and ethnic minorities afford health insurance coverage.” >> Read Now

Washington Blade: Health care is a critical social justice issue – “Far too many LGBT people don’t get the comprehensive health care they deserve. Many health care practitioners may be unaware of LGBT health disparities, such as higher rates of smoking and an increased risk of certain types of cancer. Some health care professionals do not have open communication with their LGBT patients, and, sadly, some providers still harbor prejudices toward LGBT people. Luckily, there are several efforts underway to address these issues, such as more LGBT health education in medical schools. But, there is a way to improve your health care now.” >> Read More

AFRO: ‘Supreme Court Health Reform Arguments–Day 1 – The Medicaid expansion would help to ease health and health-care disparities, which disproportionately affect African Americans. “For blacks, Asians, Hispanics and poor populations, at least half of the core measures used to track access are not improving.. the problem of persistent uninsurance is a major barrier to reducing disparities.” >> Read More

CT Mirror: In court’s shadow, others connect health to housing – “As lawyers at the Supreme Court this week battle over the future of the Affordable Care Act, housing advocates and others down the street were hoping the act could eventually play a major role in revitalizing public and subsidized housing.” >> Read More

iVillage: Black Women, Uninsured Get Worse Ovarian Cancer Care: Study – “Women with ovarian cancer who are black, either uninsured or Medicare recipients, or who have annual incomes of less than $35,000 are more likely to receive poorer-quality care, a new study shows. Researchers found these racial and socioeconomic disparities in ovarian cancer care also are associated with worse odds of surviving for five years after their cancer diagnosis.” >> Read More

USA Today: Obesity rate climbs among Mexican-American adults – “About 40% of Mexican-American adults were obese in 2010, up from about 35% in 2006 and about 21% in 1984, according to new government data. The rate for Mexican Americans is higher than the overall national average of about 36% of people who are obese, which is roughly 30 or more pounds over a healthy weight. Blacks have the highest obesity rate at almost 50%.” >> Read More

Huffington Post: Staying Healthy While Homeless Is Easier Said Than Done – “Then there’s the homeless youth I’ve taken to the emergency rooms of local hospitals. One of the biggest stings they get is “go home and rest” after being diagnosed with strep throat since they live in tents in nearby woods during all kinds of weather. I watched a 15-year-old girl vomit uncontrollably outside a public library because she had a bad case of the flu and nowhere to go to recover.” >> Read More

Huffington Post: Is Our Health Care Debate Just a Sideshow? – ““Most Americans, of course, assume otherwise. We’ve become totally accustomed to equating “health care” with “health.” If you have health care, our conventional wisdom goes, you’re going to have health.” >> Read More

New York Times: How Much Was That Treatment? – “Analysts are finding huge disparities in the amounts that private insurance plans pay for common medical procedures. This goes largely undetected by patients and their doctors because hospitals and private insurance plans treat their negotiated prices as confidential.” >> Read More President Obama, Health Insurance Doesn’t Equal Better Health Care. – “I agree that something needs to be done; especially in economic terms and given that the disparities in health in the US in terms of race and ethnicity are in dire need of serious action and attention. Moreover, the US Medicare/Medicaid budget has ballooned by most estimates from $600 billion in 2008 to $740 billion in 2010.” >> Read More

The White House Blog: Marking Two Years of the Affordable Care Act and its Impact on the AAPI Community – “Already, the Affordable Care Act has expanded access to free preventive services, including mammograms and other cancer screenings, to 2.7 million Asian Americans in 2011, and requires insurers to cover preventive care for children so families do not have to pay for services such as flu shots and well-child visits. And, to date, more than half a million Asian Americans with Medicare have received one or more free preventive services.” >> Read more

Image credit by iStock photos

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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