Health Disparities in the Deep South


Pie chart showing unequal distribution.

While America has the world’s largest economy, it also has massive disparities in health outcomes.  This issue has been well documented, going back as far as the 2002 report: Unequal Treatment: Confronting Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Health Care This report showed that even when controlled for health insurance type, income, access to the same doctor, and need for treatment, outcomes are different for African Americans (AA) – and often drastically so. While this report made health disparities a priority, the statistics remain staggering.

When compared to Non-Hispanic whites (NHW), African Americans (AA) have higher rates of:

  • Type 2 diabetes prevalence (12.7% vs 7.4%)
  • retinopathy (26.5% vs 18.2%)
  • peripheral arterial disease,
  • and mortality rates (98 vs 38 per 100,000).

They’re also less likely to receive preventive care or have HIV infections. So what’s going on here?

In honor of #MinorityHealthMonth. we decided to do a little digging into the underlying issues. Specifically, structural inequality and social determinants of health. Our latest white paper unpacks health disparities and assesses our impact on closing the gap for better health outcomes in the deep south.