Addressing health and health-care disparities: the role of a diverse workforce and the social determinants of health

Chazeman S Jackson, J Nadine Gracia
Public Health Reports 2014, 129 Suppl 2: 57-61
Despite major advances in medicine and public health during the past few decades, disparities in health and health care persist. Racial/ethnic minority groups in the United States are at disproportionate risk of being uninsured, lacking access to care, and experiencing worse health outcomes from preventable and treatable conditions. As reducing these disparities has become a national priority, insight into the social determinants of health has become increasingly important. This article offers a rationale for increasing the diversity and cultural competency of the health and health-care workforce, and describes key strategies led by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Office of Minority Health to promote cultural competency in the health-care system and strengthen community-level approaches to improving health and health care for all.

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