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Health Disparities Roundup – May 10, 2013

iStock_000010123353XSmallJust in case you missed it, here’s some of the latest health disparities news, posts and reports from this past week.

CT Mirror: Sticker price for hospital care varies widely – “The federal government on Wednesday released a list of what hospitals charge for the 100 most commonly billed services. The data is from 2011, and lists the average amount charged to Medicare by each hospital and the average amount paid. The charges are akin to sticker price. Medicare, Medicaid and private insurance generally pay significantly less than hospitals’ listed charges. But people without health insurance are often stuck with bills for the sticker price. The degree of variation in prices surprised federal health officials.” >> Read More

The Cincinnati Herald: Does anyone care about the health of minorities and poor people in America? – “The following is a letter to Members of the Commission to Build a Healthier America from Robert Wood Johnson Foundation President & CEO, Risa Lavizzo-Mourey, M.D., M.B.A. America is a country founded in the pursuit of a vision, the realization of an ideal. In words that are built into our national DNA, all of us are created equal, endowed with the inherent and inalienable right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. None of that is possible without good health. Unfortunately, today, when it comes to health and health care, we are not all equal, are we? The health of America depends on the health of all Americans and when huge numbers of us are left behind, more of the nation’s future is left behind as well.” >> Read More

New York Times: Poor People Have the Same Needs as Others – “The Oregon study uses a rigorous design to add to our knowledge about the impact of extending coverage to a poor population. The interpretation of the study has been far less compelling. Bottom line: if you were a middle class family with private insurance and your spouse’s cholesterol count or blood pressure had not improved in a two year period, would you want to go without insurance protection altogether? If you were a single adult making $15,000 a year or less, would you feel comfortable with a catastrophic coverage plan with a deductible of several thousand dollars a year?” >> Read More

The Root: Do Whites Have a Mental-Health Edge? – “With black Americans leading the country with troubling statistics in areas like unemployment, child abuse and neglect, and domestic violence, all of which can exacerbate stress, it is perhaps not surprising that the community leads the country in mental-health struggles. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Office of Minority Health and Health Disparities, African Americans are still “more likely to experience a mental disorder than their white counterparts” but “less likely to seek treatment,” though Psychology Today recently noted that there has been an increase in the number of black Americans seeking treatment for ailments such as depression over the last decade. Men are less likely to seek treatment than women, regardless of race, meaning black men are among the least likely to seek treatment overall.” >> Read More

CT Voices: Connecticut 2014-15 Biennial Budget: Impact on HUSKY A Families – “There are currently tow proposals for the FY2014-15 biennial budget. Governor Malloy’s budget and the Appropriation Committee Budget.” >> Read More

Hartford Courant: Spurned By Lawmakers, Governor To Revise HUSKY Proposal – “Gov. Dannel P. Malloy is revising a plan to significantly reduce money for HUSKY A, the state-funded insurance program for low-income children and their parents, after his proposal failed to clear a legislative committee. Under Malloy’s plan, the change to HUSKY A would affect families whose incomes fall between 133 percent and 185 percent of the federal poverty level. Children of families at those income levels would still be eligible for HUSKY A benefits, but their parents would not.” >> Read More

White House Blog: What Health Reform Means for Latinos – and Young Sisters – “The Marketplace is one of the many important provisions of the Affordable Care Act.  The Act means a few other things for Latinos and their families: An estimated 6.1 million Latino Americans with private insurance now have access to expanded preventive services with no cost-sharing which include well-child visits, flu shots, blood pressure and cholesterol screenings, and mammograms for women;  3.9 million elderly and disabled Latinos who receive health coverage from Medicare have access to an expanded list of preventive services with no cost-sharing, including annual wellness visits with personalized prevention plans, cancer and obesity screening, and mammograms” >> Read More

Huffington Post: Making ‘Patient Protection’ Essential in Obamacare – “For decades, Americans have demanded a health care system that provides lifelong access to affordable care. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act looked to be a huge step in that direction. However, recently issued regulations for implementing health care reform are threatening to undermine the Act’s fundamental goal of achieving health equity — especially for marginalized racial, ethnic and sexual minority groups. Specifically, health officials have inadvertently or otherwise made some mistakes while developing the new rules that will govern insurance benefit standards. Congress needs to act now to fix these flaws. If it fails to do so, people living with HIV — as well as millions of other Americans — could be denied essential health care services and treatments.” >> Read More

Connecticut Health I-Team: Asian-Americans Shun Mental Health Care – “Connecticut has just one clinic funded by the state Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services that treats primarily Asian-Americans. The clinic, in Hartford, serves Connecticut’s Asian-Pacific community, which includes people from 21 countries who speak 35 different languages. The Office of Minority Health within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services says of the Southeast Asians who seek mental health care, 70 percent have been diagnosed with PTSD.” >> Read More

Image Credit: iStock Photo

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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