Historical and contemporary social, structural, and political factors have created these disparities by limiting access to resources and opportunities for certain groups in our society.
Achieving health equity involves breaking down these barriers and making sure that all people have access to the resources they need to achieve their full health potential.
The KHC is working to close health disparities and ensure that all people – regardless of race, ethnicity, income, identity, and geography – have access to high value healthcare and exceptional health outcomes.
In the United States, significant racial disparities exist for health outcomes and life expectancy. The formation of health disparities in our community are supported by social factors as well as racism within healthcare. Healthcare organizations have an ethical and professional responsibility to actively acknowledge and address their role in perpetuating and eliminating health disparities within the communities they serve.
To aid in supporting these efforts, the KHC, Kentucky Nurses Association, and Have a Heart Clinic convened the Healthcare Equity Advisory Committee.
Racist systems, policies, and attitudes embedded in the United States’ infrastructure have allowed racial inequalities and systems of power to persist over hundreds of years. Healthcare is no exception to this dynamic. People of color experience more illness, worse outcomes, and earlier death than their white counterparts. These facts can be traced back to both structural and implicit discrimination in the healthcare delivery system.
On September 1, 2020, the KHC hosted a community health forum to learn more about the role of racism in the history, advancement, and future of healthcare delivery and how collective action between stakeholders can create an anti-racist healthcare system.
This healthcare equity series will explore healthcare’s role in ensuring equitable care for some of the most significant disparities that exist in the community. Attendees will learn how race-based medicine presents itself in various medical specialties and hear from local healthcare stakeholders on how these practices can be changed to create more equitable care and outcomes.