Health Center News, Uncategorized

Tools to Tackle Disparities

Community Health Centers are now armed with another tool to reduce racial health disparities, particularly among minorities who have diabetes, thanks to Pfizer. The online toolkit helps health centers and other community-based providers become a “bridge” between people with diabetes and community and health system resources (because too often the resources are beyond reach). The point of the program is to improve residents’ health and lower health costs. A new Web site, AmigosEnSalud.com, provides detailed steps that health centers and other health organizations to continue their important work in keeping communities healthy, “Diabetes, which disproportionately affects Hispanics and African Americans, is often accompanied by other serious health conditions such as cardiovascular disease and depression that require lifestyle changes in diet, physical activity, and blood sugar management,” said Joseph Gallegos, Vice President of Operations for the Western Region of the National Association of Community Health Centers (NACHC). “This program serves as one example of best practices that can be found in Community Health Centers around the country that Latinos and other minority groups call their medical home. By virtue of coming from a minority background, mostly low-income and uninsured, places them at greater risk and they face numerous barriers (language, cultural, financial) and most often lack access to care. Now that the public health community has a best practice resource for implementing a CHW program, we encourage them to take advantage of it.” One in seven patients at Community Health Centers are minorities – 36% are Hispanic/Latino, 23% are African American, 3.4% are Asian Pacific Islanders and 1.1% American Indian/Alaskan Native.