Health Care Inequity
Check this out. What you will see, as I increasingly find myself saying, is something that will not surprise you but will shock you. An extremely well written piece on how racial discrimination leads to health care inequity in the diagnosis, treatment and prognosis of cancer. Big time!!!
BUT. There are, however, geographic “bright spots.” Areas of the US where the disparities in cancer outcomes between blacks and whites are significantly smaller than the national averages. Here’s a question. Why???
Here’s the more important question. How do we get these health equity bright spots’ characteristics to spread to other areas of the US?
Across the pharmaceutical industry, we are increasingly, and gratefully, seeing a genuine commitment to helping to reduce racial health inequity. Here at ThinkGen, we are joining in that effort. We have partnered with Volunteers In Medicine (VIM) on Hilton Head Island, SC, and as a board member at that organization, I have the opportunity to be a “participant observer” in an organization that serves over 10,000 previously underserved patients, 90% of them being of color. Using ethnographic methods over the next few months, I am going to increasingly focus on getting an understanding of the innermost workings of such an organization, and then go on to study a series of Federally Qualified Health Centers to find out their “backstories.” How they work, how are they different from other medical settings and how pharmaceutical companies can help. I will be sharing my findings with you here.
Bottom Line. As demonstrated at today’s referenced URL, racial health inequity can be reduced. But we need to know more about “how” so that we can develop appropriate strategies and tactics to go beyond lip service.
What can you do today to help in the effort to make that happen?