Health News Roundup

Pandemic funding is running out for community health workers, and more in this week’s roundup

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Pandemic funding is running out for community health workers
Lauren Weber, Kaiser Health News, March 31
Community health workers – frontline public health workers who can help bridge the gap between individuals and the clinical care and social service systems – played a vital role in the pandemic response. Although community health workers were positioned as key to President Biden’s public health agenda, federal funding is now running out.

A national study finds self-perceived social status may affect Latino cardiovascular health
Gabriela Lozada, New Hampshire Public Radio, April 5
New research examines the relationship between migration and behavior in Latino people, focusing on how one’s own sense of accomplishment impacts their health. When participants perceived themselves as less successful in America, their cardiovascular health worsened. Understanding how subjective markers affect health can be a game-changer in how doctors and providers treat Latino patients and their communities.

Women are calling out ‘medical gaslighting’
Melinda Wenner Moyer, The New York Times, March 28
Studies show women, especially women of color, are more likely to have their symptoms dismissed by medical providers. Experts suggest that more funding for research about women’s  health conditions and training about implicit bias can help physicians better care for all women. In addition, trusted individuals who can accompany someone to a doctor’s appointment can play a huge role in advocating to be heard.

‘We don’t have a say’: Siobhan Wescott wants to elevate the voices of Native Americans in public health
Isabella Cueto, STAT, April 5
Siobhan Wescott is the first endowed professor and director of American Indian health at the University of Nebraska Medical Center’s College of Public Health. She is often the only Native American or American Indian person in the room, and is a frequent advocate for ground-up public health work that includes Native leaders and communities in collective decision-making.

How nursing home staff biases drive inequitable care
Jasmine Travers, Tradeoffs, April 5
A recent study sought to understand why advanced care planning for nursing home residents with dementia varied by race. The interviews conducted in the study revealed that advanced care planning occurred less often for family members of Black residents than for white residents. The authors suggest that addressing biases of nursing home staff and standardized care planning can help make nursing home care more equitable.