Actions By AMA To End Health Care Disparities

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HealthCare Disparities

"Whenpatients fail to receive high-quality care because of their race or ethnicity,the entire nation suffers. Fortunately, we in medicine are working hard to healpart of this disease of social injustice," American Medical Association President Ronald Davis writes in anopinion piece for American Medical News.

Davis co-chairsthe Commission to End Health Care Disparities, a group of more than 50 state andspecialty medical societies and other professional organizations. According toDavis, the commission, in the last year:

  • Published a framework for initiating and influencing federal, state and local actions to address racial and ethnic health disparities;
  • Created a workshop to educate physicians about disparities issues and how they can reduce disparities by improving communication;
  • Produced papers on how pay-for-performance and emerging technologies can affect disparities;
  • Recruited physician volunteers to reach out to students in underrepresented groups to encourage the students to consider health care careers; and
  • Established a program in which companies can collaborate with the health industry on reducing disparities and signed up six members.

Davis writes, "[W]e're proud of lastyear's results in our efforts to end the curse of health care disparitiesrelated to race and ethnicity. But in 2008, we look forward to doing evenmore" (Davis, American Medical News, 1/21).

Reprintedwith permission from kaisernetwork.org. You can view the entire Kaiser Weekly Health Disparities Report, search the archives, and sign upfor email delivery at kaisernetwork.org/email . The Kaiser Weekly HealthDisparities Report is published for kaisernetwork.org, a free service of TheHenry J. Kaiser Family Foundation.

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