Trust for America's Health Initiatives

Health Disparities

Health Disparities

Every American should have the opportunity to be as healthy as he or she can be. But now, health varies dramatically from state to state and community to community. Access to good medical care is obviously one important factor that impacts how healthy a person is, but a number of other factors play a role in health beyond medical care. In fact, many researchers have found that where you live, your income level, socio-economic group, and behavior often impact your health more than either genetics or access to medical care.

Health disparities are a significant threat to our nation's health. Low-income and minority communities systematically have less access to health care, higher exposure to health threats, and worse health outcomes.

TFAH addresses health disparities and factors that are beyond individual control, often called "social determinants," as a central part of our work. TFAH advocates for strategies to improve the health of all Americans, regardless of race, ethnicity, income or where they live.

Policy and Advocacy

For TFAH position statements and letters, congressional hearings, briefings and testimony, and additional policy and advocacy materials, click here.

Press Releases

November 12, 2014
TFAH’s Statement on the Administration’s Request for $6 Billion to Fight Ebola and the Senate Committee on Appropriations Hearing on Ebola

November 12, 2014
More Than 100 National Organizations Demonstrate Strong Support for Dr. Vivek Murthy as the next Surgeon General

September 25, 2014
$211 Million in Community Prevention Grants go to 193 Organizations in Every State
TFAH Applauds CDC for the Announcement

September 18, 2014
TFAH issues Statement on the Threat of Antibiotic Resistance, Recommends Government Take Additional Action

September 4, 2014
New Report Finds Adult Obesity Rates Increased in Six States
Rates Higher in South, and Among Blacks, Latinos and Low-Income Americans

More press releases


Selected items from TFAH's Resource Library:

Baby Boomers and Obesity
Facts from F as in Fat 2008 Report

Community Transformation Grants (CTGs): Promoting Proven Strategies to Fight Chronic Diseases
Community Transformation Grants, one major initiative funded under the Prevention and Public Health Fund, are targeted at addressing the leading causes of chronic diseases to improve the health of Americans and reduce health care costs over the long term. The investments being made are critical to make sure people can take personal responsibility for their health care, outside of the doctor’s office, and allow individual communities to address their greatest health needs. CTGs will benefit more than one in three Americans, approximately 145 million people.

Half of Americans Could Be Obese By 2030… Or We Could Invest In The Prevention Fund
Half of Americans could be obese By 2030...or we could invest in the Prevention Fund. An analysis conducted by the National Heart Forum, based on a peer-reviewed model published last year in The Lancet, estimates that that 50 percent of Americans are on track to be obese in the next 20 years.1 Obesity could even top 60 percent in 13 states. Right now, 36 percent of Americans are obese.

Improving the Health of Low-Income and Minority Communities
Low-Income and Minority Communities Systematically Have Less Access to Health Care, Higher Exposure to Health Threats, and Worse Health Outcomes.

The High Price of Food
Facts from F as in Fat 2008 Report

More resources