Ethnic Health Report

February 12, 2024

Looks like COVID-19 infections are here to stay, but people are too relaxed. Masks are coming off, the third booster isn’t popular, and testing isn’t happening despite suspicious symptoms. CDC estimates 1 in 25 has an active COVID infection in a room. 

January 26, 2024

Advocates of removing race from algorithms often argue that genetic ancestry is hard to identify and social determinants of health, hard to quantify and so we must collect better data. But this article begs to differ.  I believe that as a Black American, as long as I am in a category that has an increased risk to my health, I want someone to pay attention.

January 5, 2024

The Ethnic Health Report has been dedicated to addressing health issues affecting people of color in 2023. While we strive for health equity, progress has been uneven, particularly in addressing the health disparities faced by African Americans.  

December 15, 2023

It’s the holiday season already and it seems like it was just 2022. I’m not trying to preach nor try to spoil the season, I just want to remind you what could happen and my approach may be somewhat different than your doctors.

December 1, 2023

As a physician, I apologize for whatever part I have played in developing a health care system that is fragmented, disorganized, inconsiderate, rife with unconscious bias against women, people of color and the underserved. You are not getting the health care you need nor deserve. This country is 37th among nations in quality of care and what is worse, no one is talking about changing it.

October 13, 2023

We often focus this newsletter on what makes us healthy but not enough on what can keep us healthy, after all, we are the African American Wellness Project (AAWP). So, right now, I will share with you some of the ideas the AAWP has on how you can stay healthy.

 

September 22, 2023

The CDC recommended that everyone, starting from six months old, should get the new FDA-approved COVID-19 vaccine. This new COVID-19 vaccine was designed to protect against the COVID-19 variants that are currently making people sick. The CDC is recommending the vaccine for everyone aged 6 months and older. 

 

September 15, 2023

Remember the good old school days? When teachers asked who wanted to play volleyball, football, or baseball, we’d gather ’round, take a shot at tryouts, and if you had the skills, you got to play! It was the perfect way to get active, learn character traits, and – most importantly – have a good time.

 

August 14, 2023

The Coronavirus pandemic increased scrutiny of all vaccines like never before. The fact that we have had over 14 different vaccines for children, soon to be 15 with RSV, and they have protected millions of children from diseases that were once more common and deadly are now often lost in the shuffle.

 

July 14, 2023

The recent Supreme Court decision, which effectively eliminates affirmative action based on race in educational institutions, will have profound implications for our healthcare system and a direct impact on the number of untrained African American physicians. There is already a shortage of African American physicians, with only approximately 2.6% of the nation’s doctors in 2019 and 7.3% of students enrolled in medical school in 2020 being African American.

 

June 23, 2023

The terms ‘Black’ and ‘African American’ are used to refer to people of African descent in the United States. The distinction is often missed and used to mean the same thing. While both terms can be correct, they have different meanings. I never thought about it, but each term elicits a different impactful response. Describing how each is employed and perceived, broadly and in health contexts is valuable.

 

May 19, 2023

Telehealth has become immensely popular since the COVID-19 pandemic started. I know a lot of doctors do not like it, but they do not have my practice population. I practice in the urban inner city where just getting to the doctor’s office is just the first barrier. Too often appointments are missed because families not only cannot get to see me but cannot get home. If you get help on the phone, no more waiting in long lines at doctor’s offices, or spending hours on public transportation just to get basic medical care.

 

May 1, 2023

In a fascinating study, the data reveals that counties with a higher number of Black doctors see Black individuals enjoying longer lives.

This groundbreaking study is the first to discover that a higher prevalence of Black doctors directly links to longer life expectancy and reduced mortality in Black communities. Who knew? The article can only ponder this surprising result, but as someone with years of experience, I have a few insights that could shed light on the study’s outcome.

 

April 14, 2023

Some 15 million people, disproportionately Black Americans, could lose their Medicaid coverage over the next few months as pandemic-related emergency provisions come to an end. Many millions of Americans are at risk of losing their health insurance as states begin a monumental administrative task of re-checking every Medicaid enrollee’s eligibility.

 

April 7, 2023

Among all U.S. 8-year-olds, 1 in 36 had Autism in 2020, the CDC estimated. That’s up from 1 in 44 two years earlier.

But the rate rose faster for children of color than for white kids. The new estimates suggest that about 3% of Black, Hispanic and Asian or Pacific Islander children have an Autism diagnosis, compared with about 2% of white kids, but have less access to services.

 

March 31, 2023

A new study published in the New England Journal of Medicine suggests that actively monitoring localized Prostate Cancer is a safe alternative to immediate surgery or radiation.

Why Is this Important? If you have LOCALIZED Prostate Cancer, watching and waiting is a viable option but, you should always talk with your doctor.

 

February 4, 2023

For the past couple of years, there have been a couple of injectable drugs developed, given once a week to to control blood sugar, but they also control appetite. They are now all the rage. So much so that diabetic patients cannot find the drugs. The drug imitates a hormone called glucagon-like peptide-1 that we naturally produce in our intestines, limiting appetite by signaling to our bodies that we feel full and prompting our stomachs to empty more slowly.