Federal Effort Will Hold ‘Local Conversations’ in Communities Across the Nation To Address Racial Health DisparitiesHHS' Office of Minority Health throughout this fall will hold a series of "local conversations" in communities across the nation that seeks to address health care disparities among minority populations, the Akron Beacon Journal reports (Powell, Akron Beacon Journal, 7/5).
The meetings, which will run through December, seek to:
- Identify and acknowledge the social, economic, cultural and behavioral factors that contribute to health disparities;
- Examine how health care access, programs and services affect health disparities;
- Examine the role of policy in disparities;
- Determine the most effective ways to address disparities among certain groups and diseases;
- Create methods and ideas that support more effective and efficient solutions;
- Improve existing programs, identify future priority activities, and establish and strengthen state partnerships;
- Establish accountability and ownership for action at the regional level; and
- Improve communication (OMH Web site).
Findings from the meetings will be compiled into a state reports and presented in January at OMH's national meeting, Cheryl Boyce, executive director of the Ohio Commission on Minority Health and chair of the National Association of State Offices on Minority Health, said. Boyce said the meetings will give residents the opportunity to discuss the health problems affecting their community and local programs that seek to address racial health disparities.
"It's an attempt to do a national blueprint without it being done in a vacuum," she said, adding, "Besides all the problems that there are with disparities, there also are a tremendous amount of programs that are being done in local communities" (Akron Beacon Journal, 7/5). This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.