The following two items arrived in my email inbox yesterday:
The Seattle Times reported yesterday that Health dept. delivers layoff notices; maternity services hardest hit, referring to the Seattle-King County Department of Health. The WA Global Health Alliance announced that the 2011 Celebration for the Health and Dignity of Women will held in Seattle on March 8, sponsored by Americans for the UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund.
The US ranks 33rd or 46th in rate of infant mortality among countries of the world, depending on source of data analysis, hardly a track record to be emulated. Underlying the statistics of course are harsh disparities among and between sociodemographic and racial/ethnic groups, reflecting the inexcusable results of the politics of health care.
Coincidentally, last week also marked the release of the first-ever CDC Health Disparities and Inequalities Report detailing racial disparities across a wide range of health conditions and diseases. While none of the findings were news in the public health sphere,
the new official focus on the topic is significant. Some readers may recall events during the Bush Administration , when the Executive Summary of the first Congressionally-mandated HHS’ AHRQ 2003 National Healthcare Disparities Report was secretly altered from its draft version, just before its pre-Christmas release, to omit a conclusion stating that health care disparities “are national problems” and other key changes.