“The canal has one of the poorest [communities] in the entire state of California. But it was not included in the HPI lowest quartile because that community is connected to a bigger, wealthier ZIP code in the city of San Rafael.” This statement by CEO Omar Carrera, referencing the state’s “Healthy Places Index,” is one illustration of the persistent health inequities among California’s racial and ethnic subgroups that is shared in a new statewide report. Published by the California Pan-Ethnic Health Network, “Nothing About Us Without Us,” explores the tools used to address health equity and racial justice, and provides recommendations to policy makers.
As reported by the CPEHN, national, state and local policymakers including those at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the State of California are increasingly using quantitative tools like area-based social indices to identify and prioritize disadvantaged communities during and beyond the public health crisis. These indices can be helpful tools in identifying and targeting interventions to certain at-risk populations. However, questions remain about their effectiveness in directly addressing racial disparities and health inequities.
To better understand the strengths and limitations of area-based social indices, CPEHN conducted an analysis of California’s recent COVID-19 response strategies which relied on these tools to address COVID-19 inequities. CPEHN also analyzed quantitative data publicly available through the California Department of Public Health, and collected additional qualitative information through interviews with a number of CPEHN’s community partners, who helped racially and ethnically diverse Californians receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
Read the report to learn how we can collectively address racialized health disparities: Nothing About Us Without Us (cpehn.org)