Goal: Reduce health inequities in Saginaw County and provide access to education and programs to increase health equity.
There are three interrelated measures for this category including natality by race of mother, children ages 1-2 with elevated blood lead, and rankings on health, physical, and access factors that impact health equity.
Why This Indicator is Important
Current political discourse focuses on the national challenge to provide equal and adequate health care to all citizens of the United States. This debate turns on the fundamental understanding that some groups have little or no access to health insurance, and thus to adequate health care, and that the lines of division often coincide with income and race. People living in poverty, and people of color demonstrate higher tendencies than others toward significant health problems, including diabetes, asthma, hypertension, and cancer. Data used throughout the report can be used to demonstrate that safety, health, economic development, and education work together to have impact on health equity. Included in this assessment is that by improving these factors health equity will improve.
How Are We Doing?
In most health factors, Saginaw County (2013) residents rank below federal and state residents except for access to clinical care for children and adults. The ranking of Saginaw County in Michigan related to key factors that impact health equity is near the bottom of the 83 Michigan Counties except for access to clinical care (44 in clinical care to 81 in health behaviors). Low birth weight and access to medical care for mothers is impacted by race and in Saginaw there is inequity for black mothers (e.g., Black Women have rates three times higher per 1,000 persons in number of teenage mothers; 50% higher rates per 1,000 persons for born children with low birth weight; and one third less likely to receive prenatal care in the first trimester). However, Saginaw County’s data on children ages 1-2 with elevated blood lead who are tested is about half of the state rate between 2005 and 2011. This is important because poverty directly impacts this factor and Saginaw has succeeded in spite of that issue. The overall assessment of Saginaw County is that access is not an issue but other factors that impact access and overall health equity are.
How Can You Have An Impact?
- Advocate for greater local health education programs.
- Work to alleviate social and economic factors that are barriers to good health.