Blog

Connecticut’s Path to Health Equity 2021

by Samantha Lew on

Newly increased focus on health equity and racial justice have led to the enthusiasm and also sometimes a sense that equity is too big and unwieldy of a goal. To launch Health Equity Week 2021, Health Equity Solutions created this “path to health equity” as a way to show that while this journey will be long and challenging, it is also feasible and clearly laid out for us. The video depicts the policy “steps” we can take to advance health equity in Connecticut. This initial version of the path is based on conversations with partners, community members, and policymakers.

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It is Time to Declare Racism a Public Health Crisis in CT!

by Tekisha Dwan Everette on

This past summer, we saw uprisings across the state calling for long-overdue racial justice. At that time, Health Equity Solutions began a petition demanding an intentional anti-racist focus in policymaking in the state of Connecticut. With signatures from residents from over 130 towns, we knew there was a passion to do more, and we knew that we were not alone. HES began engaging with local residents to declare racism a public health crisis in local municipalities. With the help of local residents and grassroots organizations, so far 21 towns and cities and the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation have made the declaration. Our 21 municipalities are part of over 180 entities across the country who have taken this first step and we can and should become the 6th State to lead the nation in the march towards health equity for all.

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Health Equity Week 2021

by Samantha Lew on

This year, we are launching Connecticut's 3rd annual Health Equity Week from April 4-10. Health Equity Week is a week-long annual campaign created to raise awareness and start conversations about advancing health equity throughout the state of Connecticut. Join us for Health Equity Week!

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Including Equity in Vaccine Distribution

by Samantha Lew on

Governor Lamont recently announced that Connecticut will continue the age-based approach to COVID-19 vaccine eligibility with a focus on equity. Health Equity Solutions continues to be dedicated to ensuring that all people, regardless of socioeconomic status, race, and ethnicity have equitable access to health and to assert that race, gender, geography, and risk should be considered in defining priority groups for COVID-19 vaccination. If your faith-based or education-focused organization is interested in hosting an outreach event, please email info@hesct.org for more information.

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The senseless deaths and violence against people of color at the hands of police and the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on people of color in Connecticut have laid bare the systemic and ever-present impact of racism. It’s time we recognize racism as the public health crisis it is. Health Equity Solutions (HES) calls on our leaders in the cities and towns throughout Connecticut to declare racism a public health crisis/emergency. Declaring racism to be a public health crisis or emergency offers a clear path to intentionally acknowledging and addressing disparities and inequities. Adopting a resolution can catalyze and authorize data analysis, and policy analysis to prevent unintentional injustices.

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Health Equity Solutions 2021 Policy Agenda

by Samantha Lew on

Health Equity Solutions' 2021 policy priorities are steps toward health equity in Connecticut. The inequities in our state are not new and it’s time that we implement proven pathways to addressing them. The pandemic’s disproportionate toll on people of color and the outcry to dismantle racism in Connecticut and across our nation highlight the need to act now. These priorities were informed by 8 listening sessions across Connecticut, with a total of 92 participants from 37 towns/cities.

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Health Equity Solutions 2020 Listening Sessions

by Samantha Lew on

To inform our 2021 legislative agenda, Health Equity Solutions conducted 8 listening sessions across Connecticut, with a total of 92 participants from 37 towns/cities. After a brief introduction, participants were assigned to break out rooms to discuss the issues they saw as most important when thinking of health equity and health care. Participants then presented a summary to the whole group and took a poll to mark their top three priorities among all topics discussed.

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Connecticut Strives for Primacy of Health Equity in Primary Care

by Tekisha Dwan Everette on

Connecticut’s federally funded effort to introduce primary care innovations (through the State Innovation Model or SIM grant) is entering its final years of implementation. In the coming months, the state will present and finalize its proposals (to review and comment on proposals as they are released, see here). Right now is an opportune time to ensure these proposals can transform Connecticut’s health system to promote equity by investing in prevention and addressing social and economic factors that make some in our state far less healthy than others. This blog first appeared on Community Catalyst's Health Policy Hub written by Eva Maria Stahl, with contributing guest bloggers Tekisha Dwan Everette of Health Equity Solutions and Karen Siegel of Connecticut Voices for Children. It may also be found at https://www.communitycatalyst.org/blog/connecticut-strives-for-primacy-of-health-equity-in-primary-care#.W5FM3_ZFy3B

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It Is Time to Get REL!

by Tekisha Dwan Everette on

Health Equity Solutions is working with partners across the state to promote policies that expand the uniform collection of race, ethnicity and language data to inform health system change and improve health equity.

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Race, Ethnicity and Language Data Legislation

by Tekisha Dwan Everette on

Our vision at Health Equity Solutions is for every Connecticut resident to obtain optimal health regardless of race, ethnicity, or socioeconomic status. However, one of the challenges in ensuring health equity is identifying those whose lives are impacted by inequity and health disparities.

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Community Health Workers Legislation

by Tekisha Dwan Everette on

Did you know there is legislation to statutorily define community health workers in Connecticut? SB 126, introduced by Senator Terry Gerratana, is critical legislation that would support and expand the use of community health workers in cities and towns across Connecticut.

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Health Equity in 2017---Can you help us spread the message?

by Tekisha Dwan Everette on

In 2016, we started our campaign to advocate for an end to health inequities in Connecticut, but our fight has just begun. According to the America's County Health Rankings, Connecticut ranks 42nd in health disparities. We can do better than that. The election results in November also exhibited the challenges ahead. With the Affordable Care Act in jeopardy and Medicaid cuts on the horizon, we have to double our efforts. We can’t stand by while hundreds of thousands of Connecticut families lose their access to the health care that is keeping them alive. We can’t afford to go backward when there is so much at stake...

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Health Equity in the Wake of the Election

by Tekisha Dwan Everette on

Last week, Connecticut residents had a tremendous emotional reaction to the change that is coming in government. Whether it was joy or sadness, the resounding feeling was that something big had happened. Over the course of this week, I pondered what it will mean for our mission at Health Equity Solutions. In short, I cannot think of a more important time to bring awareness of health inequities and offer innovative solutions to address them. Here’s why:...

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