December Health Equity Link

Having trouble viewing this email? View it as a Web page.

u s department of health and human services - office of minority health


December 2021  |  View as a webpage

Health Equity Link Banner 2020

In this Issue

World AIDS Day (Dec. 1)

World AIDS Day, December 1: Ending the HIV Epidemic. Equitable Access, Everyone's Voice

Annually on December 1, organizations and individuals across the country and worldwide observe World AIDS Day. This World AIDS Day, the HHS Office of Minority Health (OMH) reaffirms its commitment to addressing the health disparities that disproportionately affect racial and ethnic minorities, particularly Black/African American, Hispanic/Latino, and LGBTQ+ individuals living with HIV.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), from 2015 through 2019 the rate for diagnoses of HIV infection among American Indians/Alaska Natives increased and, in 2019, the highest rate of diagnosis was 45 percent for Black/African American individuals, followed by 21.5 percent for Hispanics/Latinos.

The 2021 theme for World AIDS Day is Ending the HIV Epidemic: Equitable Access, Everyone’s Voice. This theme highlights the federal government’s strong commitment to ending the HIV epidemic in the U.S. and globally by addressing health inequities and ensuring the voices of people with HIV are central in all their work. This year, OMH launched the HIV Challenge: Innovative Community Engagement Strategies to Reduce HIV-Related Stigma and Disparities, a partnership with the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health (OASH) Office of Infectious Disease and HIV/AIDS Policy (OIDP), to identify innovative and effective approaches to improve pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) medication and antiretroviral therapy utilization among racial and ethnic minorities.

Learn More Más información

National Handwashing Awareness Week (Dec. 1-7)

Wash hands. Teach kids to do the same. Life is Better with Clean Hands. HHS CDC.

The first week of December is National Handwashing Awareness Week (December 1-7). Germs are everywhere. Make handwashing with soap and water a healthy habit to protect yourself and your family from getting sick.

To prevent the spread of germs during the COVID-19 pandemic, you should wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use a hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol to clean hands BEFORE and AFTER:

  • Touching your eyes, nose, or mouth
  • Entering and leaving a public place
  • Touching an item or surface that may be frequently touched by other people, such as door handles, tables, gas pumps, shopping carts, or electronic cashier registers/screens
  • Touching your mask

Learn about CDC’s handwashing campaign, Life is Better with Clean Hands, and download free materials in English and Spanish to remind people in your life about the importance of handwashing. Use the hashtags #KeepHandsClean and #ManténLasManosLimpias on your social media platforms to promote the importance of handwashing.

Learn More Más información

National Influenza Vaccination Week (Dec. 5-11)

I get it to protect myself. It's National Influenza Vaccination Week! Get your flu shot today. #FightFlu. HHS CDC.

To promote the importance of continuing flu vaccination through the holiday season and beyond, OMH is proud to support National Influenza Vaccination Week (December 5-11).

National Influenza Vaccination Week is a call to everyone six months and older to get their annual flu vaccine if they have not already. Flu remains a significant public health concern, and this week will serve to remind people that there is still time to get a flu vaccine—the only vaccine that protects against flu—to prevent flu illness and potentially serious complications.

People from racial and ethnic minority groups experience higher rates of severe flu illness. During the flu seasons from 2009–2010 through 2018–2019, Black/African American people had the highest flu-related hospitalization rate (69 per 100,000), followed by American Indians/Alaska Natives (49 per 100,000) and Hispanics/Latinos (45 per 100,000).

OMH encourages you to find a vaccination site near you and #FightFlu!

Learn More Más información

A Community Toolkit for Addressing Health Misinformation

Illustration of a young woman and an older woman; they look concerned as they read health misinformation

During the COVID-19 pandemic, people have been exposed to an abundance of information from a large number of sources. Amid all this information, many people have also been exposed to health misinformation: information that is false, inaccurate, or misleading according to the best available evidence at the time. Misinformation has caused confusion and led people to decline COVID-19 vaccines, reject public health measures such as masking and physical distancing, and use unproven treatments.

The U.S. Surgeon General’s Community Toolkit for Addressing Health Misinformation, developed in collaboration with the HHS Office of Evaluation Sciences (OES), provides specific guidance and resources for health care providers, educators, librarians, faith leaders, and trusted community members to understand, identify, and stop the spread of health misinformation in their communities.

Learn More

Knowledge Center

OMH Knowledge Center

In recognition of World AIDS Day, the OMH Knowledge Center is featuring a collection of articles and documents focusing on promotion, outreach, and engagement for HIV/AIDS services.

To view this collection in the online catalog, click here.

Learn More

scd 2019