Sterling Ransone, M.D., President of the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), recently wrote an article saying, “Race, ethnicity, social standing, income level or ZIP code should not be the determining factors of how healthy we are or how long we are going to live, but for many people, that’s exactly what those factors do.” He goes on to say, “the COVID-19 pandemic is perhaps the best example we have that shows the impact of health inequities on underserved populations and marginalized populations.”
April is National Minority Health Month, a month highlighted by The Office of Minority Health (OMH), The National Institute on Minority Health Disparities (NIMHD), and others to raise awareness about the ongoing health disparities experienced by minority groups in the United States.
This year’s theme, Give Your Community A Boost, is focused on the continued importance of COVID-19 vaccination and booters, debunking false information around vaccination, and promoting vaccination in local communities which, based on several studies, has disproportionately affected minority groups in the United States.
In a recent article from The Commonwealth Fund, they provide some general statistics on health inequalities in the US:
- Black and American Indian/Alaska Native (AIAN) people are at higher risk for many chronic health conditions, from diabetes to hypertension
- The COVID-19 pandemic has only made things worse, with average life expectancies for Black, Latinx/Hispanic, and AIAN people falling more sharply compared to white people
- Black, Latinx/Hispanic, and AIAN populations are less likely to have health insurance, more likely to face cost-related barriers to getting care, and more likely to incur medical debt.
- It is also less common for Black, Latinx/Hispanic, and AIAN populations to have a usual source of care or to regularly receive preventive services like vaccinations
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) defines social determinates of health as “the conditions in which we live, learn, work, and play.” These factors have a profound impact on our overall health and influence the opportunities available to us, enhancing or limiting our ability to live healthy lives. Differences in social determinates of health contribute to the chronic disease disparities in the United States among racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic groups, systematically limiting opportunities for members of some groups to be healthy.
BioIQ views it as an obligation for our mission, platform, and model, to meet the needs of disadvantaged Americans, by working with health plans, employers, and government agencies to provide routine testing for millions of people and helping to address the social determinants that prevent people from accessing care needed to stay healthy.
Our data indicates more than 40 percent of those tested on an annual basis have one or more social determinants of health, demonstrating the ability for BioIQ’s mission, platform, and delivery model to help target and address disparities in care, and in particular racial health disparities, exacerbated by the pandemic.
BioIQ provides convenient, at-home diagnostic testing solutions that saves lives, helps people improve their lives, and works to create a world where everyone gets care that is personalized, convenient, high impact, and cost-effective. helping millions of people more easily access and navigate the system to better understand their health and take action.
For health plans, enterprise companies, and government agencies looking to positively impact cost and health outcomes through early identification and intervention of chronic diseases for their member groups. Contact us today!