health equity

AAAS Fellows to Host Symposium on COVID-19 & Health Inequities

The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Science and Technology Policy Fellows will host a day-long symposium addressing “Health Inequities Exposed and Exacerbated by the COVID-19 Pandemic’” on Wednesday, June 30, 2021. The symposium will feature expert panels on healthcare access, health literacy, and the long-term social, behavioral, and economic impacts of COVID-19 mitigation efforts. More information about the symposium is available here.

NIH Releases Minority Health and Health Disparities Strategic Plan for 2021-2025

The National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD) within the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has released its strategic plan for 2021 through 2025 to advance minority health and health disparities research across all NIH institutes, offices, and centers. The strategic plan, which was developed with input across the NIH and the minority health and health disparity research community, lays out goals and strategies for the agency to advance additional scientific research, support research-adjacent activities, and expand outreach and strategic communications on minority health and health disparities. These goals and strategies include: Promoting research to understand and improve…

Senate Health Committee Holds Hearing on COVID-19 Response and Addressing Health Disparities

On March 25, the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) held a hearing on health equity and health disparities exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Committee members heard testimony from Vice President for Health Equity at Vanderbilt University Medical Center Dr. Consuelo H. Wilkins, Executive Vice President of the Seattle Indian Health Board Abigail Echo-Hawk, Managing Director of the Poverty to Prosperity Program at the Center for American Progress Taryn Mackenzie Williams, and President and CEO of Atrium Health Gene A. Woods. Committee Chair Patty Murray (D-WA), Ranking Member Richard Burr (R-NC), and Committee members all expressed…

NIMHD Funding Research on Vaccine Hesitancy and Health Disparities

The National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD) within the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has released a Notice of Special Interest announcing a new funding opportunity for research on hesitancy to participate in vaccines among populations that experience health disparities. The notice seeks submissions on a variety of social and behavioral research questions including evaluating strategies to increase vaccination rates among target communities and methods to address barriers of receiving vaccines among health disparate communities, especially those with a higher risk of experiencing vaccine hesitancy. The first available due date for applications is February 5, 2021, with…

NIMH Requesting Comments on Improving Mental Health Disparities

The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) within the National Institutes of Health (NIH) is requesting stakeholder comments to inform potential research seeking to improve mental health outcomes among minority and health disparity populations. The request specifically seeks input on how certain social determinants can affect mental health outcomes, how racial discrimination may affect mental health outcomes, potentially understudied social or behavioral determinants of mental health, ideas or innovations to reduce mental health disparities, promising interventions to treat mental health disparities, tools to properly measure mental health outcomes, and ideas on preventing racial discrimination at the individual, family, or community…

NIMHD Holds 10th Anniversary Symposium

On March 3, the National Institute of Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD) within the National Institutes of Health (NIH) held the Innovations to Promote Health Equity symposium celebrating the Institute’s 10th anniversary. The symposium, held on the NIH campus in Bethesda, MD, featured comments from NIMHD Director Eliseo Perez-Stable and NIH Director Francis Collins and focused on the latest innovations in health disparities research organized into four topical panels: Division of Intramural Research, Community Health and Population Sciences, Integrative Biological and Behavioral Sciences, and Clinical and Health Services Research. A video recording of the full symposium is available on…

NIMHD to Celebrate 10th Anniversary with Scientific Symposium

The National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD) within the National Institutes of Health (NIH) is hosting a scientific symposium titled Innovations to Promote Health Equity in honor of the institute’s 10th anniversary. The symposium will highlight new discoveries in minority health and health disparities research and will feature four panels focused on the following issue areas: Integrative Biological and Behavioral Sciences Community Health and Population Sciences Clinical and Health Services Research Multidisciplinary Intramural Research at NIMHD The symposium will take place at the NIH campus in Bethesda, Maryland on March 3, 2020 and will be webcast live…

AHRQ Releases 2016 Healthcare Quality and Disparities Report

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) has released the 2016 edition of its Congressionally-mandated National Healthcare Quality and Disparities Report (QDR). This year marks the 14th annual release of the report, which compiles over 250 individual measurements to present a comprehensive overview of the equity and quality of our health care system. The report is available on the AHRQ website. Back to this issue’s table of contents.

National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities Answers “Why Social Science?”

The latest Why Social Science? guest post comes from Dr. Courtney Ferrell Aklin and Dr. Eliseo J. Pérez-Stable of the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), who write about how the social and behavioral sciences help us understand the social determinants of health and address health disparities. Read it here and subscribe. Back to this issue’s table of contents.

NAM Releases Report: Communities in Action: Pathways to Health Equity

The National Academy of Medicine (NAM) Board on Population Health and Public Health Practice’s Committee on Community-Based Solutions to Promote Health Equity in the United States recently released a report, Communities in Action: Pathways to Health Equity, which reviews the “state of health disparities and explores the underlying conditions and root causes that contribute to health inequity.” Highlighting the need for additional research, among the report’s recommendations is a call on the funders of research (government, foundations, and higher education) to “support research on (a) health disparities that examines the multiple effects of structural racism (e.g., segregation) and implicit and…

HHS Office of Minority Health Releases Compendium of Publicly Available Datasets

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Minority Health (OMH) recently announced the release of a new resource, the Compendium of Publicly Available Datasets and Other Data-Related Resources, to aid researchers, public health practitioners, and policymakers with data on health and health care disparities and social determinants of health. A free resource, the Compendium provides “descriptions of and links to 132 public datasets and resources that include information about health conditions and other factors that impact the health of minority populations.” The new resource was created by the Federal Interagency Health Equity Team of the National…

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. Back to this…

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.”…

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…

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…

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…

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.”

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.

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.

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…

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