Blog Archives

Candidates Sought for CDC Health Disparities Advisory Subcommittee

The Health Disparities Subcommittee of the Advisory Committee to the Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (ACD, CDC) is seeking nominations for new members. The Subcommittee provides expert advice to the CDC Director and Health and Human Services leadership on ways to reduce health disparities, including through research, program and policy analysis, and other CDC activities. Candidates should have expertise in “health policy, public health, global health, preparedness, preventive medicine, the faith-based and community-based sector, and allied fields.” More information is available in the Federal Register notice. Nominations are due by September 30, 2016.

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Posted in Issue 17 (September 6), Update, Volume 35 (2016)

Academies Release Workshop Proceedings on “Framing the Dialogue on Race and Ethnicity to Advance Health Equity”

The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s Roundtable on Population Health Improvement recently released the proceedings of a workshop titled, Framing the Dialogue on Race and Ethnicity to Advance Health Equity. The workshop was designed to share “strategies for individuals, organizations, and communities to advance racial and health equity.” It addressed such topics as “increasing awareness about the role of historical contexts and dominant narratives in interpreting data and information about different racial and ethnic groups, framing messages for different social and political outcomes, and readying people to institutionalize practices, policies, and partnerships that advance racial and health equity.” The proceedings are available here.

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Posted in Issue 16 (August 9), Update, Volume 35 (2016)

Tri-Caucus Introduces 2016 Health Equity and Accountability Act

On June 15, led by Representative Robin Kelly (D-IL), members of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC), Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC), and the Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC) introduced the Health Equity and Accountability Act (HEAA) (H.R. 5475). The groups, also known as the Congressional Tri-Caucus, have introduced versions of the legislation since 2007, which has served to inform other health-related legislation considered by the Congress, including the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

Introducing the bill, Rep. Kelly, chair of the CBC Health Braintrust, noted that HEAA “is a reminder that there is much work to be done to improve health outcomes in minority populations.” She was joined at the bill’s roll out by CAPAC chair Judy Chu (D-CA), CAPAC Health Taskforce co-chair Barbara Lee (D-CA), CHC Health Task Force chair Michelle Lujan Grisham (D-NM), CHC chair Linda Sanchez (D-CA), and CBC chair G.K. Butterfield (D-NC).  The bill currently has 18 co-sponsors.

Among other things, if enacted, the bill would direct the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to support research addressing minority health and health disparities. Issues and topics addressed by the 800-page bill include: data collection and reporting; workforce diversity; mental health; healthcare outcomes for women, children and families; “high impact minority diseases” (cancer, cardiovascular disease, chronic disease, HIV/AIDS, diabetes, lung disease); health information technology; accountability and evaluation; and social determinants of health, the built environment, and environmental justice.

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Posted in Issue 14 (July 12), Update, Volume 35 (2016)

NIMHD Accepting Applications for Health Disparities Research Institute

The National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) is seeking applicants to its Summer Institute on Health Disparities Science. The Institute which will be held on the NIH campus from August 15-19, 2016, is designed to “support the development of individual research projects by promising scientists early in their careers and … stimulate research in the disciplines supported by science on minority health and health disparities.” The course includes lectures, seminars, and small group discussions on research relevant to minority health and health disparities along with sessions by NIH scientific staff engaged in related health disparities research across the various NIH Institutes and Centers. Early career researchers from diverse backgrounds, as well as individuals interested in research on minority health and health disparities within academic, community-based, nonprofit, and other non-academic settings are encouraged to apply. Applications are due June 1, 2016.

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Posted in Issue 10 (May 17), Update, Volume 35 (2016)

NIH Minority Health Institute Moves Ahead on Science Visioning of Health Disparities

At the June 9 meeting of National Advisory Council on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NACMHD), outgoing Acting Director Yvonne Maddox updated the Council on the Institute’s Science Visioning process for health disparities research.  NIH Deputy Director Larry Tabak will serve as the Institute’s Acting Director until newly appointed director Eliseo Perez-Stable’s arrival in September.

To initiate the process, the Institute released a request for information in April (see Update, May 4, 2015).  Maddox reported that a trans-NIH Science Vision Advisory Group had been appointed and working groups are being established. The working groups will hold discussion forums around areas of science “to establish foundational concepts for advancing the science of health disparities research.”  The trans-NIH advisory group is populated by senior NIH leadership and led by Irene Dankwa-Mullan, Acting Deputy Director, NIMHD Division of Extramural Scientific Programs. (more…)

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Posted in Issue 11 (June 16), Update, Volume 34 (2015)

NIH Requests Comment on Precision Medicine Cohort, Strategies to Address Community Engagement and Health Disparities

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is seeking feedback (NOT-OD-15-107) to help it in creating a national research cohort of one million or more Americans as part of the President’s proposed Precision Medicine Initiative (PMI) (see Update, May 19, 2015).  The agency is specifically interested in feedback relating to the development and implementation of effective community engagement strategies for the cohort, and the ability to conduct transformative research to address health disparities.  The aim is to assemble a “cohort reflective of the rich diversity of the U.S. population.” (more…)

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Posted in Issue 10 (June 2), Update, Volume 34 (2015)

NIMHD: Advancing Health Disparities Interventions Through Community-Based Participatory Research

Research supported by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has resulted in an increasing growth in knowledge of the complexity of the interactive factors influencing health across the life course. There is extensive research evidence that report poorer health outcomes for socially disadvantaged populations, including low-income and racial and ethnic groups. Many community health promotion and disease prevention programs fail for various reasons that include the lack of a participatory approach or cultural sensitivity, despite the recommendation for tailored and multilevel interventions. (more…)

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Posted in Issue 10 (June 2), Update, Volume 34 (2015)

NIMHD: Building Population Health Research Capacity in the U.S. Affiliated Pacific Islands

The United States-Affiliated Pacific Islands (USAPI) consist of the U.S. territories of American Samoa, Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, Republic of the Marshall Islands, and Republic of Palau. The U.S. is responsible for the essential operations, health, education, and defense for these jurisdictions. The residents of these jurisdictions are considered to be a U.S. health disparity population. The National Institutes of Health (NIH), however, acknowledges that this geographic region has received very little NIH support to conduct health and health disparities research. (more…)

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Posted in Issue 10 (June 2), Update, Volume 34 (2015)

AHRQ 2014 Healthcare Quality and Disparities Report Shows Improved Overall Quality and Access, Lingering Disparities

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) has released its congressionally mandated report to Congress on the status of health care quality and disparities in the U.S. In past years, this information has been released as two separate reports (the National Healthcare Quality Report and the National Healthcare Disparities Report). For 2014, AHRQ has chosen to combine the two into the National Healthcare Quality and Disparities Report (QDR). The agency believes that combining the reports “highlights the importance of examining quality and disparities together to gain a complete picture of health care.” The 2014 report is shorter and more focused than prior year reports, although the complete data will be made available in the form of chartbooks that will be posted monthly beginning in April.

The report shows improvements in the insurance rates for non-Medicare-eligible adults and improvement in health care access for children. In addition, there were improvements in most of the measures of priority health care quality areas identified by the National Quality Strategy, including patient safety, person-centered care, effective treatment measures, and healthy living. However, the report found persistent disparities in the access to and quality of care available to racial and ethnic minority and low-income households. Though some disparities were reduced or eliminated (such as for childhood immunization rates), most did not improve, while some even grew larger (such as those related to hospice care and chronic disease management).

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Posted in Issue 7 (April 21), Update, Volume 34 (2015)

White House Issues Report on Expanding Opportunity and Addressing Challenges Facing Women and Girls of Color

On November 13, the White House Council on Women and Girls (CWG) released a report, Women and Girls of Color: Addressing Challenges and Expanding Opportunity. The Council is chaired by Valerie Jarrett. The report highlights the tremendous achievements women of color have made; it also examines the inequities and “distinct” challenges facing women of color and looks at efforts underway to close the gaps in educational outcomes, pay, career opportunity, and health disparities, among other areas. (more…)

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Posted in Issue 21 (November 17), Update, Volume 33 (2014)

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