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New Report Examines Health Disparities In Maryland

Credit: Edwintp/Pxhere
Credit: Edwintp/Pxhere

A new report by the United Health Foundation sheds light on how health disparities have evolved in Maryland and across the country.

Dr. Rhonda Randall, senior advisor to the United Health Foundation, said one of the most concerning trends in Maryland is a sharp rise in diabetes among certain racial groups.

The report, released in June, found an 81% rise among Asians and Pacific Islanders between 2013 and 2019.

“Nationally, that's typically been a race that has had lower rates of diabetes than others,” Randall said.

People with diabetes are more likely to develop complications from COVID-19.

Randall also noted a 55% rise in food insecurity among households led by adults with some college education. Food insecurity disproportionately affects households led by adults who have not finished high school.

The report focuses on pre-pandemic data, and Randall said it’s too early to tell how exactly the data will change due to the pandemic. But she said the report would still be useful background information for developing strategies to tackle health disparities.

“We want public health officials, policymakers, community leaders and individuals to use this as a springboard for that conversation,” she said.

The full report is available on America’s Health Rankings.

Sarah Y. Kim is WYPR’s health and housing reporter. Kim is WYPR's Report for America corps member, and Anthony Brandon Fellow. Kim joined WYPR as a 2020-2021 corps member for Report for America, an initiative of The GroundTruth Project that pairs young journalists with local newsrooms. Now in her second year as an RFA corps member, Kim is based in Baltimore City.