ISSUE 7 Building a Better Future: Stories of Hope in Health, Food, and Wellness
Whenever a new documentary or article shares the disparities in healthcare and access to quality foods for Black people, impoverished people, and all people, my initial reaction is anger. I’m tired of hearing about these disparities. How much research and analysis is needed for us actually to have access to resources to feel better? In a system that we know does not always support our well-being, what can we actually do to protect our peace in all of its forms whether it is mental, physical, or our community?
In this issue, we’ll share recent programs, studies, and organizations that give us hope. We hope this silver lining will also inspire you to consider what actions you can take in your everyday life to promote change or support others who are working to bring about change.
NY, Calif. Poised to Ban PFAS ‘Forever Chemicals’ linked to cancers, immune system suppression and lower birth weights.
“New York and California are the first of more than a dozen states banning or considering bans on so-called forever chemicals – poly-fluoroalkyl (PFAS) – in food packaging because they do not break down, instead accumulating on the bodies of animals and humans, and are linked to cancers, immune system suppression and lower birth weights.”
[It’s not all in your head](https://www.nyu.edu/about/news-publications/news/2022/december/depression-Black-women.html#:~:text=Black women with symptoms of,Columbia University School of Nursing.)
A new study led by researchers at NYU Rory Meyers College of Nursing and Columbia University School of Nursing found that, “it’s possible that health care providers may miss depression symptoms in Black women, resulting in underdiagnosis and undertreatment,” said Nicole Perez, PhD, RN.
Black women in the study with greater depressive symptoms were more likely to report somatic symptoms (e.g. fatigue, insomnia, decreased libido) and self-critical symptoms (e.g. self-hate, self-blame) than stereotypical depression symptoms such as feelings of hopelessness or depressed mood.
Why is this good news? Now that this difference in how depression symptoms may materialize in different populations is available, it can increase the likelihood of earlier diagnosis and treatment for Black women. This is a new study within a limited population, but it provides insight into how you might approach new doctors when working to ensure that you receive the care you need.
A St. Louis doula program, part of a nonprofit that received funding in the $1.7 trillion federal budget bill
“The nonprofit, Parents as Teachers, is in a network of more than one dozen “home visiting” programs that won a large funding increase in the $1.7 trillion spending bill that Congress passed late last year.
By providing the doulas, who offer nonmedical support to mothers before, during and after delivery, the program is extending a benefit largely associated with white and affluent women to predominantly Black, low-income mothers in St. Louis who would not otherwise know about it or be able to afford it.”
“A new backdating policy will help Black kidney transplant patients get translplants sooner. After rejecting an antiquated test that underpredicted kidney failure in. Black patients the board also approved a waiting time adjustment for Black transplant candidates.
It’s a “restorative justice project in medicine,” said Dr. Martha Pavlakis, nephrologist and kidney transplantation committee chair at the transplantation network.”
“San Francisco-based guaranteed income program that gives monthly checks to pregnant Black women received $5 million to expand its care to soon-to-be-mothers across California, the San Francisco Department of Public Health announced Tuesday.”
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