Dear friends and colleagues,

Since the city was founded in 1718, New Orleanians have faced health challenges. Cholera, tuberculosis, and yellow fever all swept the city in the 1800s. But, health clinics were available to whites only. Access to health care for African Americans continued to be limited until 1943 when local governments legally decreed that all black men be treated for diseases to ensure they would not be rejected from military service during World War II.

Fast forward to 2016, the recent Medicaid expansion and growing network of community-based providers in New Orleans hold promise for increasing access to health care. However, ensuring high-quality, unbiased care remains a significant challenge. More than a decade of research has explored how physicians’ implicit bias – unconscious and involuntary attitudes about race – can influence their communication, treatment recommendations, pain management decisions, and empathy. 

Moreover, maintaining a healthy life extends beyond access to medical care. In order to better support access to health-promoting resources (such as safe and clean environments, good housing, and quality education), public health efforts are beginning to move beyond a focus on individuals’ actions to explore more broadly the conditions in which people are born, grow, and age.

Today, The Data Center is releasing the fifth in our series of briefs we are calling The New Orleans Prosperity Index: Tricentennial Collection. This briefs is contributed by Danielle Broussard and Lisa Richardson of Institute of Women and Ethnic Studies, and Maeve Wallace and Katherine Theall of Tulane School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine.

To learn more, check out  “Advancing Health Equity in New Orleans: Building on Positive Change in Health” as part of The New Orleans Prosperity Index: Tricentennial Collection

Bringing you the data you need to make informed decisions,

The Data Center team
Bernardo Espinosa, Allison Plyer, Erica Amrine, Keisha Smith, Dabne Whitemore, Lamar Gardere, and Rachel Weinstein
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