Tag Archives: health equity

Why race equity plans matter and how to report on them

Photo via Canva

Dallas is among cities, counties and other local governments that have recently adopted race equity plans. In the 2022-2023 goals and metrics report, city officials have said they want to track their goals, which include tracking air quality in certain areas and upgrading water and sewer lines in neighborhoods that haven’t seen investment for decades. There’s a line in there about improving the health of the city’s Black and Hispanic residents, who represent more than 60% of the population of the country’s ninth-largest city and are more likely than their white peers to have preventable chronic diseases. 

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A reporter considers the consequences of publishing a source’s legal status

Marc Ramirez

Millions of unauthorized immigrant adults — who represent more than 80% of immigrants living in the United States illegally — contribute to public health programs they may never benefit from because of their legal status. In a recent story that highlighted the lack of health care coverage for undocumented older people, Marc Ramirez, a national correspondent for USA TODAY, interviewed a man from Mexico, in part because the vast majority of unauthorized immigrants are from Latin America.  Continue reading

Tips for reporting on inequities in access to health care in Puerto Rico

Photo by Preston Keres/U.S. Dept. of Agriculture via Flickr.

As the devastation Hurricane Fiona caused in Puerto Rico settles in, we may see more stories about the storm’s effect on access to health care. The recent news reports about the power outages suggest that primary and specialty services may be hard to come by for months, raising questions about what steps were taken to help the territory shore up its health care infrastructure after another hurricane pummeled the commonwealth five years ago.  

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Government’s Project US@ working to standardize patient addresses across electronic health records

Photo by Abstrakt Xxcellence Studios via pexels.

Your mailing address could soon be used as a valuable tool to help health systems properly identify you and link disparate medical records held by different entities.

Since early 2021, the federal government has been working on Project US@ (pronounced “USA”), an initiative to establish a standard approach for representing patient addresses across all health IT systems. The effort, led by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC), is believed to improve what is known as patient matching — the processes involved in correctly identifying patients and linking their medical records within and across systems.

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How to use health equity data to cover access to COVID‑19 rapid tests

Victoria Knight

When the Biden Administration rolled out two COVID-19 rapid tests programs in mid-January, Kaiser Health News reporters Victoria Knight and Hannah Recht were separately researching the initiatives, including one that allowed Americans to get free tests through the U.S. Postal Service. Their reporting included interviewing experts and gathering U.S. Census Bureau data about health equity measures such as home-based internet subscription rates. 

The behind-the-scenes reporting illustrates how some stories are rooted in social media serendipity and collaboration. In this “How I Did It,” Knight and Recht explain how the article came together and why the data they compiled suggested that millions of Americans — mainly Black, Hispanic and Native American, and Alaska Native people — could face significant challenges in getting the rapid tests. (The following conversation was edited for clarity and brevity.)

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