Health: Equality

Health written question – answered on 15th July 2008.

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Photo of Sandra Gidley Sandra Gidley Shadow Minister, Health

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment he has made of levels of health inequalities in urban communities between (a) white, (b) mixed race, (c) Asian and (d) Afro-Caribbean ethnic groups; and what steps he plans to take to reduce such inequalities.

Photo of Dawn Primarolo Dawn Primarolo Minister of State (Department of Health) (Public Health)

Primary care trusts and local authorities assess levels of health inequalities between different ethnic groups in urban communities at local level to inform service planning. Nationally the Department has provided tools to aid this process such as joint strategic needs assessment and the health inequalities health poverty index.

The Department has also put in place specific programmes of work to tackle health inequalities between ethnic groups including race for health and delivering race equality in mental healthcare. Action to address ethnic health inequalities is an integral and vital part of our national drive to increase health overall and to reduce inequalities. In a fair society, everyone should have equal opportunity to have a healthy life and the Department is committed to facilitating equitable outcomes in the interest of all sections of the population.

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