Director of the NH Health and Equity Partnership
125 Airport Road
Concord, NH 03301
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Dear Partner in Equity:
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Access to Care
NH’s growing diversity challenges the healthcare system to adapt to meet a broad spectrum of new, often unrecognized or unknown needs. Members of our New Hampshire communities face economic, transportation, cultural, literacy and communication barriers to care. This is compounded by the complexity of our healthcare system. Individuals are confronted with complicated directions to navigate the system, receive test results, locate specialists,caring for all aspects of their mind and body.
Access to Care - Key Points
- Access to affordable and quality healthcare disproportionately affects minority populations.
- Integrated care is essential for ensuring healthy individuals. This will require changes to physical, mental and oral healthcare systems.
- Federal regulations require that healthcare providers ensure effective communication with their patients, but there is limited funding available to support providers in this effort.
- Culturally responsive care and improved health literacy can greatly improve health outcomes
- There is evidence to support the belief that a diverse health care workforce results in improved access, satisfaction and outcomes, such as adherence totreatment.
Access to Care - Recommendations
- Expand access to high quality and affordable healthcare.
- Expand access to health insurance coverage.
- Develop high quality patient centered health care for all.
- Address transportation needs to enable access to healthcare service providers.
- Promote an integrated, holistic health perspective to include the physical, mental and oral.
- Develop community members’ health literacy and capacity to navigate the healthcare system.
- Support efforts to improve providers’ capacity to serve diverse populations.
- Require training on cultural competence and on all forms of discrimination as part oftraining, licensure, and continued credentialing of all health professionals.
- Promote culture change within healthcare organizations to improve the delivery ofculturally responsive care.
- Improve the education that providers receive on patient-centered, culturally responsive care.
- Advocate for funding streams tied to culturally and linguistically appropriate healthcare.
- Support efforts to improve organizations’ capacity to serve linguistic minorities.
- Work to improve access to ASL/English interpreters in medical settings.
- Diversify the healthcare workforce to better reflect the populations served.
- Expand the pool of diverse healthcare workers through proven practices such as pipeline initiatives and utilizing the skills of foreign-trained health workers.
Current initiatives by NH H&EP Partners
Cultural Awareness Healthcare Workgroup
A networking group for staff at healthcare organizations seeking to improve the cultural and linguistic effectiveness and the level of patient and family-centered care their organization provides. Please contact Rebecca Sky for more information.
Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Foundation Culture InSight Partnering For Healthy Communities Project
This project takes a three pronged approach to impact health professions schools, health care organizations, and the existing health professional workforce to increase awareness of health equity issues and Cultural and Linguistic Appropriate Care (CLAS) Standards in New Hampshire. The project also seeks to increase the quality and cultural responsiveness of health care, and improve team-based inter-professional care. Please contact Rebecca Sky for more information.
Culture InSight Trainer's Circle
The NH Health & Equity Partnership supports a network of facilitators able to provide staff development trainings on the topics of diversity, culture, and cultural competency for health care and social service organizations in New Hampshire. A list of facilitators is available here. Trainings to become a facilitator are available upon request and on a periodic basis. Please contact Rebecca Sky for more information.
Behavioral Health Equity work group
The Behavioral Health Equity Workgroup is a joint effort of the NH Health & Equity Partnershipand the NH Children's Behavioral Health Collaborative. It is an open group whose membership is made up of people, from both the public and private sectors, whom have an interest in improving behavioral health services for all NH residents. We work to identify disparities, improver equity in access, and promote the use of culturally relevant and meaningful behavioral health services that will create an effective and high-quality behavioral health system for all.
For question regarding this workgroup, please contact Amy Parece-Grogan.
Workforce Diversity H&EP Committee
A new committee of the H&EP getting off the ground. Contact Shawn Barry for more info.