The Importance Of Disparities In Health And Health Care

839 Words 4 Pages
Despite major advances in medicine and public health during the past few decades, disparities in health and health care persist. Health disparities are prevalent in the United States and are significant among underrepresented racial and ethnic groups (Mitchell, 2015). Compared to white Americans, these groups are uninsured or underinsured, have decreased access to care, and receive poor quality of care (Agency for Healthcare Research & Quality [AHRQ], 2013). Nurses can aid in reducing health care disparities through health systems interventions, cultural competency, and patient, provider relationship interventions.
Although the Affordable Care Act has supplied over 20 million Americans health care insurance, the amount of care a person can
…show more content…
Patients, specifically from minority backgrounds, may present with limited health literacy. According to studies conducted, low health literacy predicts the likelihood of being uninsured (Adepoju, Preston, Gonzales, 2015). Consequently, it is important that nurses improve their ability to communicate with their patients and reduce the amount of jargon. To increase the understanding of at home treatment plans, and health care options the nurse should go through teach back techniques to assess whether the patient understands the information provided and what was not effectively communicated (Teitelbaum & Wilensky, 2009). Moreover, nurses should always provide equal quality of care to all patients, regardless of their race/ethnicity. A study conducted compared patients interactions with their health care provider and what they discovered was that blacks were significantly less likely to be referred for further testing than white patients (Dovidio et al., 2008). This in turn creates a stigma for minorities that health care providers do not care about their well-being and creates a sense of mistrust. It is important that nurses examine their own personal processes of care and think about ways they could improve their communication skills with their patients. The nurse has an important role in reducing disparities by opening communication with their patient’s and providing them with the equal

Related Documents