The Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services Office of Health Equity (OHE) was established in 2008 to address disparities and adverse outcomes among the state’s racial and ethnic minorities. The OHE is committed to eliminating health disparities among racial and ethnic minorities and rural and low-income populations. OHE’s primary objectives are to increase awareness of health disparities, strengthen leadership at all levels for addressing health disparities, enhance patient-provider communication, improve cultural and linguistic competency in delivering health services, and improve coordination and utilization of research and outcome evaluations.
The Office of Health Equity plans to enhance and support two program areas within the Kentucky Department of Public Health. Year 1 will focus on the Kentucky Colon Cancer Screening Project and Year 2 will support the Kentucky Women’s Cancer Screening Program. The project intends to address Kentucky’s high rates of colon and cervical cancer, which disproportionately affect African Americans and other minority populations in the state.
The office will work with the Colon Cancer Screening Project to provide technical assistance and training, screening services, and cultural competency and health literacy training to the Kentucky Colon Cancer Screening Project patient navigators.
For the Kentucky Women’s Cancer Screening Program, the office will adapt health literacy tools related to screening and public awareness campaigns and will increase recruitment and screening of rarely or never screened women in minority and rural underserved communities.