As a complementary health provider, I am challenged, and as a new resident of a poor rural county, I am keenly aware of what we lack here with regard to health services. There’s no urgent care clinic in the area, for one thing. It’s either wait for an appointment (with a shortage of doctors) or go to the emergency room.
However, there is another type of disparity. The racial/ethnic (and economic) disparities that come into play whether you are urban, suburban, or rural. Below are some sources of information about this horribly tragic situation. And I’m not exaggerating. I suspect that here in Lake County, this situation is worsened by the lack of resources.
• Unnatural Causes – Is Inequality Making Us Sick? This documentary series provides a critical grounding in just how these disparities affect people.
Additional Unnatural Causes documents for teaching, media, etc.
• Race, Ethnicity, Culture, and Disparities in Health care, L.E. Egede, M.D., National Institute of Health (NIH) website, 2016.
• Black Mothers Keep Dying After Giving Birth. Shalon Irving’s Story Explains Why, Nina Martin & Renee Montagne, NPR, Dec. 7, 2017.
•Inequality in Health Care is Killing African-Americans, Vernillia R. Randall, Human Rights, (American Bar Association), 2011.
• Reaching for Health Equity, Centers for Disease Control (CDC), 2016.
My questions are: What roles can complementary health and wellness providers play in helping to address such disparities? And what can we do to promote greater equity in access and care, even as we promote general health and wellness?