Advancing Health Equity for the Black CommunityJanuary 10, 2023
Health equity means that everyone has the chance to be their healthiest. But many Black people in America still face obstacles when it comes to caring for their health and well-being. Sadly, these obstacles, or healthcare disparities, have led to lower life expectancies and higher rates of poor health and disease in the Black community.1 As we work to advance health equity, we’re sharing resources that can help you and your family stay healthy.
- Stay up to date on preventive visits and screenings. This helps reduce the risk of serious long-term health issues. Use the Find Care and Cost tool at empireblue.com to search for primary care doctors in your plan’s network.
- Understand and use your health benefits. Visit empireblue.com to review your health plan so you can take full advantage of the support your benefits offer.
- Find housing, transportation, employment, and nutritious food. These can all affect a person’s overall health and well-being. Go to empireblue.findhelp.com to search our database and find groups in your community that can help.
The affects of health inequity in the Black community
Black Americans are more likely than white Americans to report ongoing feelings of sadness and hopelessness, but only a third receive the care they need. Many people have trouble accessing care and confronting the stigma around mental health in their communities.2
- Go to empireblue.com/mental-health for resources that can help you connect to care and learn more about mental health.
Black Americans are 60% more likely to be diagnosed with diabetes than non-Hispanic white Americans.3 Since healthy eating and regular physical activity reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, access to nutritious food is essential.
- Go to empireblue.findhelp.com to find organizations providing nutritious food in your area.
- Visit diabetes.org to learn more about preventing type 2 diabetes.
In 2018, Black people were 30% more likely to die from heart disease than white people. On top of that, Black adults were more likely to have high blood pressure, but less likely to have it under control.4 A healthy lifestyle that includes regular physical activity and visits to the doctor can help you manage your heart health.
- Use the Find Care and Cost tool at empireblue.com to find a primary care doctor in your plan’s network, if you don’t have one already.
- Learn more about heart health from the American Heart Association at heart.org.
Black people have the highest death rate and shortest survival of any racial or ethnic group in the U.S. for most cancers.5 Preventive screenings help with the early detection of several types of cancer and can help increase survival rates.6
- Visit cancer.org to learn more about cancer risk, prevention, and screenings.
- Go to empireblue.com/preventive-care/ to see which preventive screenings are recommended for you.
Visit takeactionforhealth.org to learn more about why Black people are at higher risk for certain health issues and how you can prevent them.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Impact of Racism on our Nation’s Health (accessed December 2022): cdc.gov.
- National Alliance on Mental Illness: Identity and Cultural Dimensions (accessed December 2022): nami.org.
- U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health: Diabetes and African Americans (accessed December 2022): minorityhealth.hhs.gov.
- U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health: Heart Disease and African Americans (accessed December 2022): minorityhealth.hhs.gov.
- American Cancer Society: Cancer Disparities in the Black Community (accessed December 2022): cancer.org.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: How to Prevent Cancer or Find It Early (accessed December 2022): cdc.gov.