HHS To Reduce Health Disparities Between Elderly Hispanics

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HHS plans to launch a nationwide initiative that seeks to reduce health disparities between Hispanic and white elderly individuals, the McAllen Monitor reports.

The effort stems from the 2006 Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality National Healthcare Disparities Report that found that Hispanics older than age 65 are less likely than whites in the same age group to be vaccinated for pneumonia or influenza, manage their diabetes and undergo cancer screenings, John Wren, deputy assistant secretary HHS' Administration on Aging, said.

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As part of the effort, HHS is inviting several cities through the nation with large Hispanic populations -- including Chicago; El Paso, Texas; Houston; McAllen, Texas; Miami, Los Angeles, New York City; and San Antonio, Texas -- to participate in a yearlong pilot project. AHRQ, AOA, CDC, CMS and the Health Resources and Services Administration will work with participating communities to develop a network that seeks to improve overall services and encourage Hispanics to take advantage of new Medicare benefits.

Seven of the communities will be chosen to receive a two-day training session in Washington, D.C., and participate in the pilot project. Wren called the initiative a "great partnership opportunity" for participating communities. The deadline for the communities to apply to the program is July 24 (Berghom, McAllen Monitor, 7/1).

Reprinted with permission from kaisernetwork.org. You can view the entire Kaiser Daily Health Policy Report, search the archives. The Kaiser Daily Health Policy 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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