Thursday, December 07, 2006


The New England Coalition for Health Equity

Since 1998, LHI has been the research arm of the New England Coalition for Health Equity. NECHE brings together community activists, public officials and academic public health researchers and practitioners throughout the region to develop and encourage state policy to eliminate health disparities.

On behalf of NECHE, we conducted an assessment of racial and ethnic identification practices in public health data systems throughout New England, which was published in Public Health Reports. We also organized two regional symposia on state policy. The first, on data issues, was held at Northeastern University in 2002. The second, at Tufts University School of Medicine in 2004, focused on a range of policy issues as discussed in the Commonwealth Fund report, A State Policy Agenda to Eliminate Health Disparities.

The Commonwealth Fund, and the U.S. Office of Minority Health, through OMH regional program consultant Janet Scott-Harris, have given us a small amount of funding to follow up on these projects. Right now, our Evaluation Associate Nina Joyce and I are updating the inventory of public health data systems, and conducting an up-to-date review of state policy in the six New England states as compared to recommendations in the Commonwealth Fund report.

NECHE will be presenting our findings at a panel at the New England Regional Minority Health Conference at the Foxwoods resort in Connecticut in April. Joining me on the panel will be one of the Commonwealth Fund report authors, Brian Kevin Gibbs of Harvard School of Public Health; Bill Walker, Director of the New Hampshire Office of Minority Health; Carrie Bridges, Coordinator of disparities initiatives for the Rhode Island Department of Public Health; Bruce Cohen, Director of Health Statistics and Research for the Massachusetts Department of Public Health; and Janet Scott-Harris, who will moderate.

We will also prepare written reports of our findings for publication, and the results will be available from me, on request. Please feel free to contact me if you would like more information on these projects.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006



The Latin American Health Institute is pleased to introduce this new resource for our staff, friends, and everyone who is interested in the health of Latinos in the United States, the health of all ethnic and linguistic minorities in, health equity, and public health in general.

LHI is a Latino community based organization with offices in Boston, Brockton and Lowell, Massachusetts. We offer a range of health promotion and disease prevention programs, social services, and behavioral health services. LHI is a licensed mental health and substance abuse treatment provider.

This blog is about our work in research, including medical and public health sociology, and policy-related research in disparities in health and health care; and public policy, including our participation in the New England Coalition for Health Equity, and the Massachusetts Disparities Action Network, as well as our own efforts on behalf of the Latino community. We will also discuss other research findings and public policy developments of relevance to our readers.

We won't necessarily be posting on a regular schedule, but we will bring you updates whenever events warrant, and you can count on finding new material here at least a few times a week. Your comments are encouraged, and we will do our best to answer questions or respond to suggestions. The top level posts will normally be in English, but comments are welcome in English or Spanish. Acogimos comentarios en español tanto como inglés.

Right now, the contributors to this blog are Bart Laws, who is Senior Investigator in Social Science and Policy at LHI; and Robert Pomales, Executive Director of Policy and Strategic Relations. "Cervantes," who you also see on the contributor list, is our site administrator. Other LHI staff, collaborators, clients or friends who would like to make a post on this blog should contact Bart or Rob and we'll see if it's appropriate. Or, you can always put your contribution in the comments.

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