Increasing Prevention and Avoiding the ER

In 2012, the U.S. Census Bureau reported that the average life expectancy for black males is approximately 64 years old, compared with 73 years for white males. Racial and ethnic minority groups are less likely to have access to the preventive care they need to stay and are more likely than white Americans to suffer from chronic conditions, prompting the theme for this year’s Minority Health Month; “Prevention is Power: Taking Action for Health Equity.”

Luckily, 10.2 million Latinos, 6.8 million African Americans, nearly 2 million Asian and Pacific Islanders, and over a half million American Indians and Alaska natives …read more

Dismantling Barriers to Health, One Word at a Time

Emergency Room (Photo credit: Mark Coggins)

I recently read an article about Deisy Garcia, a woman who filed a police report saying her husband had assaulted her and that she feared for her life. That report, filled out in Spanish, sat untranslated — and without follow up – for months until she and her two children were murdered.

No human being should be denied protection from bodily harm due to language barriers and cultural incompetence. Deisy Garcia’s death could have been prevented had she been given the protection she sought. Her health, well-being, and ultimately her life was taken …read more

Commemorating National Minority Health Month

April is National Minority Health Month, an opportunity to raise awareness about health disparities affecting racial and ethnic minority groups in the U.S. The WellPower blog team is committed to raising these issues to public consciousness, and writing about the ways that social determinants like education, housing, and jobs affect health.

Throughout April, we will be blogging about issues that are aligned with this year’s Minority Health Month theme; Prevention is Power: Taking Action for Health Equity. This brings to mind the old saying that ‘an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.’ Although there are many …read more

2013: Things that Made Us Go “Hmmm…” In the Health Sphere

It is time to bid farewell to 2013 and gear up for the adventures that await us in 2014. But, before we cast our eyes toward the future, let’s take a brief moment to reflect – in the immortal words of C+C Music Factory – on the top five “things that made us go ‘hmmm…’” in the health sphere over the past year.

View of Gothenburg from the docks at New Years Eve. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

5. Despite the fact that one quarter of Americans have trouble putting food on the table, Congress voted to cut $4.1 billion from …read more

ACA Help is on the Way!

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

If you find the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and health insurance options confusing, you are not alone…literally. There is help on the way! Starting October 1, 2013, consumers in all states will be able to choose affordable health insurance options through new Health Insurance Marketplaces. Consumers can get help as they apply for and choose new insurance options from Community Navigator Organizations.

On August 15th, The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced the organizations who would be receiving nearly $65 million in funds to set up their Community Navigator programs. As stated …read more

No Breaks for America’s Poorest

Skeptics of the new healthcare law have been prophesying doomsday and the rise of socialism. The reality is that state-level healthcare policies will come far from providing universal coverage – many will actually leave out our nation’s poorest citizens.

Image from The Advisory Board Company at http://www.advisory.com/Daily-Briefing/2012/11/09/MedicaidMap

This omission was not an original component of the healthcare law, but rather came last year after the Supreme Court ruled that Medicaid expansion was a state-level choice. In the best case scenario, states would have seized this opportunity to leverage the Affordable Care Act and expand coverage to all of their …read more