April is observed as National Minority Health Month to raise awareness about health disparities affecting racial and ethnic minority populations. It was originally a one-week observance established by Dr. Booker T. Washington in April 1915 as the Negro Health Week, and has since grown to a one-month observance known today as National Minority Health Month.
According to the CDC, health disparities are the differences in health outcomes and their causes among groups of people. For example, African-American children are more likely to die from asthma compared to White children. Reducing health disparities creates better health for all Americans. Everyone deserves health equity for improved well-being and happiness. The World Health Organization even states that health makes an important contribution to economic progress.
This year’s theme is “Active & Healthy” to emphasize the important role an active lifestyle plays in staying healthy. Even incorporating small amounts of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity into our schedules promotes health and reduces the risk of chronic diseases and other conditions that are more common or severe among racial and ethnic minority groups.
What can you do to improve your health?
Quit Smoking – Sign up for the Community Cessation Initiative. It’s a FREE program open to all Franklin County residents (over 18) who use tobacco products.
Get Moving! – Regular physical activity can improve your health and reduce the burden of chronic diseases, such as heart disease, diabetes, and some cancers. It can even prevent early death. The weather is getting nice, and walking is an easy way to start and maintain a physically active lifestyle.
Get Connected – Follow the US Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health on Social Media for tips to improve your health.