Raising Health Awareness Among Hispanics, Blacks

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Initiatives seek to raise health awareness among Hispanics, educate Blacks about chronic diseases, recognize culturally tailored insurance programs. The following summarizes coverage of efforts that seek to reduce racial health disparities.

* Chicago: A version of the "Got Milk" campaign, which includes a mobile tour bus that will visit several locations to educate Hispanics on the importance of drinking milk and maintaining a healthy weight, began on Friday, Extra News reports. The Milk Mustache Mobile Tour -- in partnership with Meredith Publications and Curves International -- also includes a publicity campaign contest, activities and other sweepstakes and prizes for participants (Extra News, 9/17).

* Mayo Clinic: Faculty and students from the Mayo Clinic Center for Translational Science Activities on Thursday partnered with the University of Pittsburgh's Graduate School of Public Health Center for Minority Health for an initiative that will send health professionals into urban communities to offer health education to residents. The seventh annual "Take a Health Professional to the People Day" event is recognized by NIH's National Center on Minority Health and Health Disparities and calls for teams of physicians, dentists, nurses, public health educators and other professionals to visit 10 urban barbershops and beauty salons to deliver health messages on how to prevent and manage chronic diseases afflicting minority populations (Mayo Clinic release, 9/16).

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* National Committee for Quality Assurance: NCQA recently recognized eight managed care plans for programs that aim to improve the health of ethnic minorities. The 2008 "Recognizing Innovation in Multicultural Health Care" Awards -- supported by the California Endowment -- were given to five insurers for developing programs specifically for blacks; two that focused on improving language barriers; and one that developed a program for indentifying racial health disparity "hot spots." Recipients are Aetna; Highmark; Keystone Mercy Health Plan; Molina Healthcare of Michigan, UnitedHealthcare; UnitedHealthcare Latino Health Solutions; Virginia Premier Health Plan; and Wellpoint (NCQA release, 9/15).

* Portland, Ore.: An initiative between the African-American Health Coalition and the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation aims to encourage 100 black women in the city to receive a mammogram within one year, the Oregonian reports. To date, 67 women have scheduled a mammogram, and if a cancerous cell is found, women can receive no-cost treatment through the Oregon Breast and Cervical Cancer Program (Hanna-Jones, Oregonian, 9/14).

* South Carolina: The South Carolina Centers of Economic Excellence program has approved using $3.6 million from the state education lottery funds to develop the Center of Economic Excellence in Prostate Cancer Disparities Research, which will seek to improve screening and early detection of the disease among black men. The project is a collaboration among the Medical University of South Carolina, the University of South Carolina and South Carolina State University (CoEE release, 9/16).

Reprinted with permission from kaisernetwork.org. You can view the entire Kaiser Weekly Health Disparities Report, search the archives, and sign up for email delivery at kaisernetwork.org/email . The Kaiser Weekly Health Disparities Report is published for kaisernetwork.org, a free service of The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. © 2007 Advisory Board Company and Kaiser Family Foundation. All rights reserved.

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