PUBLIC HEALTH
Eliminating Health Disparities

On November 9, 2004, the 2004 Council of the Medical Society of The State of New York took action to establish an independent MSSNY Task Force which would seek to incorporate the recommendations found in the 2002 IOM report, “Unequal Treatment: Confronting Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Healthcare”, as well as model several of the policy objectives found within AMA policy to eliminate racial and ethnic disparities in health care in New York State. Initially, the Task Force was chaired by Dr. Anthony Clemendor and titled, “The Task Force to Eliminate Racial and Ethnic Health Care Disparities”. In 2009, the Task Force was made a permanent Standing Committee and renamed “The Committee to Eliminate Health Care Disparities”. The focus of the Committee was broadened to include all health care disparities.

Vision Statement
“Our vision is to create a model of achievement that overcomes healthcare disparities through education and practical initiatives and provides the resources to effectively reach all healthcare providers, healthcare delivery organizations, and patients throughout all of New York State, and all of America, without regard to race, class, religion, source of payment, place of origin, and economic or cultural status.”

Mission Statement
The Mission of this Committee is to eliminate healthcare disparities by obtaining evidence on racial and ethnic health care disparities, identifying causes, and proposing effective strategies. Provides physician awareness and education, patient! public education, youth-focused mentoring and education programs on the vital role of minority physicians, and improved data collection on race and ethnicity.

Committee to Eliminate Health Care Disparities

Committee News
The Committee has received grants from Pfizer to enable it to participate in the Doctors Back to School Program developed by the American Medical Association. This program will send Task Force Members, who are physicians, into middle and high schools in their counties to talk to students, particularly minority students, and encourage them to pursue a career in medicine. They will mentor those students who exhibit interest and help them to pursue the goal of entering medical school and becoming a physician.  Additional grants from Pfizer enabled the Committee to develop and produce CME programs entitled Culture Block: How Cultural and Ethnic Beliefs and Traditions Affect a Patient’s Medical Care and Compliance; and a health literacy program entitled Effectively Communicating With a Diverse Patient Population.  Each of these programs was presented to close to 1,000 physicians and other health care providers and both were evaluated extremely well.