Category: Diversity and Inclusion

Strategic Skill Area

Social Inequality and Health Disparities in the COVID-19 Pandemic

Course Objective

  • Identify key trends in health disparities during the COVID-19 pandemic to date
  • Describe how the pandemic exacerbates existing social inequalities
  • Examine several proposed interventions to address health disparities in the pandemic response

Date: June 2nd, 2020

Presenter:
Alexandra Zenoff, MPH.
Senior Program Manager
East-West Management Institute, Inc. (EWMI)


In this month’s Log-in2Learn webinar Alexandra Zenoff discusses the role of structural racism in health disparities, how this affects health outcomes and the need to address it. The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated social inequalities and considering the social determinants of health is crucial to alleviating this issue. Drawing insights from historic and current public health efforts can help with designing responses to the COVID-19 pandemic. The importance of building on existing best practices like community consultations and appropriate data collection is discussed. Participants are provided with articles for further learning and resources such as the COVID-19 racial tracker and CDC’s Social Vulnerability Index.

Participants will learn about the following:

  1. Identify key trends in health disparities during the COVID-19 pandemic to date
  2. Describe how the pandemic exacerbates existing social inequalities
  3. Examine several proposed interventions to address health disparities in the pandemic response
COVID19: Using a Health Equity and Human Rights Lens to Protect Vulnerable Populations during this Pandemic and Beyond

Course Objective

  • Discuss why COVID-19 is a health equity issue
  • Identify key principles of the health equity and human rights frameworks to protect vulnerable and marginalized populations during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond
  • Describe the role of community engagement and advocacy during this pandemic and beyond
  • List sample strategies for transformative and long-lasting change

Date: April 7th, 2020

Presenter:
Renata Schiavo, PhD, MA, CCL
Senior Lecturer, Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, Department of Sociomedical Sciences
Founder and President, Board of Directors, Health Equity Initiative


In this month’s Log-in2Learn Webinar Dr. Renata Schiavo discusses the challenges faced during COVID-19 through a health equity lens. Pandemics are complex circumstances that thrive on inequalities and weak health and social systems. Vulnerable populations are not able to adequately adhere to safety measures and bear the burden of pandemic impacts. The webinar explores how a Social Determinants of Health approach should be implemented to address inequalities during a pandemic.The course also highlights risk communication, community engagement and advocacy as key strategies to support this agenda.

Participants will will be able to:

      1. Discuss why COVID-19 is a health equity issue
      2. Identify key principles of the health equity and human rights frameworks to protect vulnerable and marginalized populations during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond
      3. Describe the role of community engagement and advocacy during this pandemic and beyond
      4. List sample strategies for transformative and long-lasting change
Shifting the Narrative: Trauma Informed Care to Systems Change

Course Objective

  • Develop a shared understanding of the importance of viewing trauma on a systems level
  • Identify how to utilize trauma informed principles in organizational policy and program development
  • Explain the stages of trauma informed organizational change development and implementation

Date: March 3rd, 2020

Presenter:
Ali Mateo Belen, MSW
Trainer and Principle Consultant
A Mateo Consulting


This month’s Log-in2Learn Webinar takes a look at trauma-informed principles and procedures, encouraging organizations and systems to acknowledge and recognize the trauma that individuals experience. Participants will learn how understanding individual trauma/manifestations of trauma, reflect in the way systems are able to give care to clients and workers within the organization. Participants will also be able to differentiate between policies and practice and learn ways to implement practices that not only benefit clients, but also benefit employees.

Participants will learn how to:

  1. Develop a shared understanding of the importance of viewing trauma on a systems level
  2. Identify how to utilize trauma informed principles in organizational policy and program development
  3. Explain the stages of trauma informed organizational change development and implementation
Addressing Unconscious Bias in our Language
Two Thought Bubbles on Blue Background

Course Objective

  • Evaluate your thoughts or behaviors for unconscious bias
  • Explain ways that language use can intentionally or unintentionally contribute to health disparities
  • Describe ways that your organization can work to examine, expand, and alter language regarding patients and clients to provide more equitable care and services

Date: April 3, 2018

Presenter:
Anne Marie Liebel, EdD
Founder and President
Health Communication Partners LLC


As health professionals, it is critical that we reflect and address unconscious bias in our language, especially when working with patient populations. Dr. Anne Marie Liebel discusses how uttering subtle microaggressions can have a cumulative negative effect on health and wellness. Dr. Liebel presents research on the linkages between microaggressions and health disparities. In particular, microaggressions from healthcare providers can negatively impact patient health related behaviors and utilization of health services. Thus, as we recognize our own microaggressions, Dr. Liebel provides individual and organizational strategies to examine, expand, and alter language to provide more equitable care and services.

#NYCHealthEquity – Advancing Racial and Social Justice
New York City

Course Objective

  • Describe the roles institutions have played in fostering, exacerbating and perpetuating racism and other forms of oppression
  • List the ways institutions can work with neighborhoods and communities to amplify their inherent power to heal together
  • Describe the role public health practitioners have in leveraging their power and privilege to embolden larger movements and coalitions seeking to name injustice and liberate oppressed groups

Date: February 20, 2018

Presenter:
Aletha Maybank, MD, MPH
Deputy Commissioner and Founding Director
Center for Health Equity at the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH)


For one to have a true commitment to health equity, it is critical to engage with the political, social, and historical context of structural racism within our society. The history of slavery and segregation is deeply embedded within public policies which has fostered neighborhood underdevelopment, increased incarceration rates, and health disparities among minority and ethnic populations. Dr. Aletha Maybank, Deputy Commissioner and Founding Director of the Center for Health Equity at the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) discusses the work of the Center for Health Equity to decrease health disparities and create an equitable and thriving city for all. The DOHMH and Center for Health Equity use a racial justice lense to build organizational capacity to advance racial equity through data visualization, community engagement, neighborhood investment, and public policy. Dr. Maybank discusses a neighborhood place-based approach which leverages past public health practices by implementing evidence-based interventions to provide coordinated health promotion services, clinical services, and community resources to increase community access to goods and services and close coverage gaps. Dr. Maybank discusses the importance of working with sister agencies to advance the health equity agenda and emphasizes the importance of multi-sectoral partnerships to promote community change.

Hair as a Social Determinant of Health Among Black Adolescent Girls
African American Woman

Course Objective

  • School nurses will be able to identify and explain the cultural beliefs surrounding cultural hair practices.
  • Public Health Professionals will acquire the cultural competency to proactively deter childhood obesity among black girls.
  • Local Health Departments will understand the need to direct funding toward interventions and programs addressing the socio-cultural barrier of hair to physical activity of overweight and obese adolescents.

Date: November 28, 2017

Presenter:
Patricia O’Brien-Richardson, PhD, MS Ed
Assistant Professor
Rutgers University School of Public Health


Hair is perceived as a socio-cultural barrier to physical activity among a group that is disproportionately affected by obesity, overweight, diabetes, high blood pressure, and cardiovascular disease. Culturally relevant research and subsequent interventions and programs are needed to prevent urban black adolescent girls from becoming inactive, obese adults. In this webinar we will explore hair as a social determinant of health among black adolescent girls. Hair holds special meaning to women and girls of all racial and ethnic backgrounds, and has significant value to many women of African descent, and is often influenced by historical, social, and cultural factors.

Engaging Communities in the Research Process to Enhance Outcomes and Sustainability: Practical Strategies for Researchers and Public Health Practitioners
Illustration of Group of People Moving

Course Objective

  • Name the different levels of community engagement that researchers can participate in.
  • Describe the importance of understanding and involving the communities you are researching.
  • Define cultural humility.

Date: November 7, 2017

Presenter:
Carly Hutchinson, PhD, MA
Researcher and Lecturer, Sociomedical Sciences
Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health


Community-based participatory research (CBPR) is a research method that equitably involves all community and academic partners in every step of designing and conducting research. CBPR allows community members to research a topic that is important to them and improves their health. This course provides practical strategies to help people engage in a more successful way with communities using CBPR. CBPR is successful because of the relevancy of a co-developed research project and greater community buy-in, both of which lead to better outcomes and sustainability.

Dr. Hutchinson describes the Community Engagement Continuum for the various ways in which researchers can involve communities in their research, and provides two case studies for how this has been done. She gives further tips on how to get started trying CBPR and makes a strong case for its value.

Socio-structural factors, health disparities, and the uptake of biomedical HIV prevention for Black Men who have Sex with Men (MSM)
Two Black Men

Course Objective

  • Describe how factors not directly related to biomedical HIV prevention (e.g., the labor market, law enforcement, gendered expectations) influence how Black MSM approach HIV prevention and pre-exposure prophylaxis
  • Give examples of how factors across multiple levels (e.g., structural, community, interpersonal) impact how Black MSM engage with biomedical HIV prevention
  • Describe what types of multi-level approaches might facilitate Black MSM’s uptake of PrEP. Describe how can we balance the development of more proximate interventions (e.g., education campaigns) with large scale interventions (e.g., expanding insurance access) that might have a larger impact

Date: September 11, 2017

Presenter:
Morgan Philbin, PhD, MHS
Assistant Professor
Columbia University University Mailman School of Public Health


Black men who have sex with men (MSM) are at significantly higher risk of HIV. This is due to a complex interplay between socio-structural factors and their own intersectional identities. In this webinar, Dr Philbin describes her ethnographic study examining how factors at all levels of the social-ecological model shape healthcare behavior for black MSM and how they access PreP, as well as her sub-study about structural barriers to access. Some of these barriers included misunderstanding about PreP’s effectiveness and side-effects, concerns that it would decrease others’ condom use, distrust in the pharmaceutical industry and healthcare providers, precarious housing, the structure of the labor market, gendered healthcare systems, institutional and normative gender rules, and stigma. Dr Philbin highlights the importance of reducing barriers at all levels, particularly at the structural level in areas of stigma, employment, and housing. The implications include the need to eliminate the relationship between employment and access to healthcare, enacting policies that regulate shift work (scheduling and pay), creating clinical spaces that welcome all types of men, and expanding the PreP Assistance Program.

Caring for Vulnerable Populations in School Health
Diverse Group of Toddlers

Course Objective

  • Describe how vulnerable populations are identified in the school setting.
  • Give examples of the issues (medical, mental, social) commonly faced by students in vulnerable populations.
  • List methods to increase community and school involvement in the care of students in vulnerable populations.

Date: September 5, 2017

Presenter:
Natalie Mathurin, MD, MPH
Medical Director at Student Health Services
School District of Philadelphia

Cheryl Lawrence, MD
Medical Director at the Office of School Health-Family and Child Health
New York Department of Health and Mental Hygiene


Dr. Mathurin and Dr. Lawrence describe the purpose and goals of programs developed to aid children that belong to vulnerable populations using the New York City Department of Health as a case study. The beginning of the presentation considers data about vulnerable populations in New York City and why it is important to address health of children in these populations. The presenters then present the mission, objectives, frameworks, and activities of programs to care for students in vulnerable populations.

A Community-Based Organization’s Approach to Addressing LGBT Health Disparities
Colorful Balloons in Shape of a Rainbow

Course Objective

  • Identify the social and medical barriers that impact health outcomes for these various communities
  • Cite examples of culturally sensitive and inclusive programing for LGBTQ communities

Date: February 28, 2017

Presenter:
Gary Paul Wright
Founder and Executive Director
African American Office of Gay Concerns


This session will describe how the African American Office of Gay Concerns (AAOGC), a non-profit agency in Newark, NJ, has made great impacts in the health of the LGBT communities, with a particular emphasis on addressing health disparities in the LGBT community. The session focuses on the social and medical barriers regularly faced by members of the LGBT community.

Region 2 Public Health Training Center