Coughlin, Rebecca and Carty, Denise C. and Ridings, Corey and Weir, Sheryl and Grigorescu, Violanda (2011) Using secondary data to monitor racial/ethnic minority health equity in Michigan: The Michigan Health Equity Data Project. Other. UNSPECIFIED.
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Introduction: Identifying and tracking racial/ethnic minority health disparities can be challenging due to differences in data available from varied and non-integrated sources. The Health Equity Data Project (HEDP) compiles Michigan data for eighteen priority indicators for five racial/ethnic minority populations across consistent time periods to identify and monitor disparities. Indicators include social determinants, behaviors, and health outcomes. Materials / Methods: Data were gathered from secondary data sources, and four standard measures were used to evaluate health disparities and changes in disparities over time. Population-wide disparity was measured by an Index of Disparity (ID), which indicates subpopulation variation around the total population rate. Whites were used as the reference population because it provided the most statistically reliable comparison. Results: The most favorable comparison of a minority population to whites was unhealthy mental days between Asians and Whites; Asians had 0.2 times that of Whites. The least favorable comparison was gonorrhea incidence between Blacks and Whites; Blacks had 31.6 times that of Whites. The largest population disparity was gonorrhea incidence (117.3%), while the smallest was household income (16.4%). Between 2000 and 2009, the indicator showing the greatest decrease in population disparity was unemployment rate (-37.6%), while the greatest increase was in unhealthy physical days (18.7%). Discussion: There was great variation in the magnitude of disparities and how disparities changed over time. The HEDP identifies disproportionate health exposures and outcomes in racial/ethnic minority populations and monitors progress toward reducing disparities. These results can be used to target health improvement efforts in specific communities.
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