Date: September 15, 2022
National Hispanic Heritage Month
This year, as the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Office of Minority Health (CMS OMH) honors National Hispanic Heritage Month, the focus will be on the nation’s 60.5 million Hispanics by highlighting some common health disparities facing Hispanic populations and sharing resources to help further health equity.
Hispanic populations suffer from lower rates of health insurance coverage compared to their non-Hispanic counterparts, with nearly 30% of Hispanic adults aged 18 to 64 being uninsured. Like other minority groups, Hispanic populations are disproportionately affected by chronic health conditions, such as diabetes, cancer, and heart disease. Hispanic subpopulations also face their own distinct health disparities including higher rates of smoking among Puerto Rican and Cuban male populations, as well as higher rates of chronic liver disease and cirrhosis among Mexican populations. Additionally, among Hispanic pregnant individuals, the maternal mortality rate increased significantly from 2019 to 2020, largely due to COVID-19 related health disparities.
As Hispanic populations continue to face disparities related to COVID-19 and other health conditions, it is important to have all the information and resources needed to ensure Hispanic patients receive culturally and linguistically competent care from their health care provider and are able to take steps towards better health. Below, please find materials in Spanish, data, resources on language access, culturally and linguistically appropriate services (CLAS), and more. Throughout this month and beyond, CMS OMH encourage you to review and share these resources to continue to advance health equity for Hispanic populations.
- Visit the Coverage to Care (C2C) website in Spanish to find consumer-facing resources that are available in Spanish. Be sure to download the newly updated C2C Roadmap to Behavioral Health (Spanish), which serves as a companion guide for mental health and substance use service with the Roadmap to Better Care (Spanish). The newly updated Managing Diabetes: Medicare Coverage and Resources is now also available in Spanish and is aimed at helping patients with managing their diabetes and health coverage.
- Read the Disparities in Health Care in Medicare Advantage by Race, Ethnicity, and Sex: April 2022 stratified report, which looks at racial, ethnic, and gender differences in health care experiences and quality of care for people with Medicare Advantage.
- Use the Mapping Medicare Disparities Tool to identify areas of disparity between subgroups of people with Medicare (e.g., racial and ethnic groups) in health outcomes, utilization, and spending. This tool is also available in Spanish.
- Review the Understanding the Health Needs of Diverse Groups of Hispanic Medicare Beneficiaries data highlight, which examines the medical needs and challenges of a fast growing Hispanic population.
- Download A Practical Guide to Implementing the National CLAS Standards, which serves to enable health care organizations to implement the National CLAS Standards, improve health equity, and provide practical tools and examples of CLAS.
- Download CMS’s Guide To Developing A Language Access Plan, which is a resource to help organizations develop a plan to provide services to individuals who are non-English speaking or have limited English proficiency.
- Download the Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Improving Cultural Competency for Behavioral Health Professionals e-learning program for behavioral health professionals to increase their cultural and linguistic competency.
- To find federal vaccine resources, visit the Immunization and Vaccine Resources webpage and CDC’s COVID-19 Vaccine Webpage in Spanish.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security issued a final rule applicable to noncitizens who receive or wish to apply for benefits provided by the HHS and States that support low-income families and adults. This rule will help ensure that noncitizens can access health-related benefits and other supplemental government services to which they are entitled by law, without triggering harmful immigration consequences. The final rule will be effective on December 23, 2022.