Alliance for Patient Access Statement on Health Disparities
The Alliance for Patient Access envisions a health system rooted in patient-centered care for every American. But for communities of color, achieving health equity is still too far out of reach.
Persistent and systemic health disparities stem from:
- Social determinants that predispose Black Americans to chronic conditions such as asthma and diabetes – and increase their likelihood of deadly cardiovascular disease
- Racial bias in the health care system, which fosters distrust among Black patients and undermines optimal care
- Higher rates of premature birth among Black mothers, which increase their infants’ risk of respiratory syncytial virus and neonatal complications
- Less economic security, which makes it difficult to maintain health care during a national crisis such as Hurricane Katrina or COVID-19
- Health plan delay tactics and cost shifting, which impede access for patients who don’t have the support, time or resources to fight for the care they deserve
- Inadequate health economic assessments, which do not fully quantify the impact of social determinants when analyzing the value of medications that could benefit communities of color.
This is a bellwether moment. As the United States grapples with longstanding discrimination and racial injustice, the Alliance for Patient Access redoubles its commitment to addressing health disparities.
Until communities of color can lay equal claim to patient-centered care, the Alliance for Patient Access will continue to advocate for policies that reduce health barriers, encourage optimal care for Black Americans and respect the needs of each individual patient.