New report explains CT health disparities

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Photo by Perry Grone on Unsplash

Babies of black mothers in Connecticut are over four times more likely to die in their first year than babies born to white mothers, according to a new report from the CT Health Foundation. Black state residents die at 1.2 times the rate of whites. Overall Connecticut residents are among the healthiest in the nation, but not everyone shares equally in that good health. People of color living in our state are more likely to suffer poor health across many metrics. The causes are complex including access to care and social factors such as affordable housing, education, safe neighborhoods, little access to healthy food and access to transportation. One in four Hispanic adults in Connecticut does not have a personal doctor compared to one in ten white state residents. But socioeconomic differences do not explain all the differences in health. Studies have found that black and Latino patients do not receive as much care as white patients with the same conditions. In 2018, it was estimated that health disparities cost Connecticut an extra $384 million and $121 million in higher hospitals costs for black and Hispanic residents, respectively. The report draws on successful efforts in other states for recommendations for Connecticut, including improving data collection – and then acting on it, get more people healthcare coverage, and promoting clinical practice guidelines and evidence-based treatments.