Through the Affordable Care Act, birth control should be accessible regardless of the device. However, there is still a legal battle over devices that have many variations, such as oral birth control. If there is more than one option, insurance companies may not cover it. This legality is questionable and continues to be fought.
The biggest legal barrier to access to health care for low-income immigrant workers is that they cannot have Medicaid coverage until they’ve resided in the U.S. for five years (Mandal, 2016).
Being overlooked by the health care system means that minorities are not seeking treatment as often as whites, and when they do, they are not being treated as often as whites. This disparity exists because of stigmas surrounding treatment, which may be more prevalent among minorities. It also exists because of white biases, hopefully unintentional, where they are not getting treatment as often as whites. I agree that these biases exist, especially in low-income communities and areas that are disproportionately white.
In mental health care of students, disparities exist among racial minorities even when school-based counseling is available for all. It is not clear why this disparity still exists, but it may be because of social stigmas surrounding seeking help or that minorities are seeking help elsewhere, such as through the church, family, etc. (Thomas, Temple, Perez, & Rupp, 2011).
Mental health access and utilizations barriers can be lessened by ensuring that doctors have training in minority disparities and that access to care is promoted. This access and utilization is improving with the amount of insured minorities on the rise, but it is still a challenge.
Former U.S. Surgeon General, David Satcher, has strategies to decrease the chance of minorities being overlooked by the health care system. They include improving access to care, getting more minorities in the health care workforce, improving access to mental health, substance abuse, oral health and HIV/AIDs care (Satchel, 2003). Many of these needs related to issues that fall unequally on minorities who are often in low-income brackets without insurance. However, Satcher’s article is form 2003, and the Affordable Care Act has likely reduced some of the problems of being overlooked.
Gilman, M. (2016). How limiting women’s access to birth control and abortions hurts the economy. Raw Story. Retrieved from http://www.rawstory.com/2016/04/how-limiting-womens-access-to-birth-control-and-abortions-hurts-the-economy/
Mandal, A. (2016, May 13). Disparities in access to health care. News Medical. Retrieved from http://www.news-medical.net/health/Disparities-in-Access-to-Health-Care.aspx
Satcher, D. (2003, May). Overlooked and underserved: improving the health of men of color. American Journal of Public Health (93)5: 707-709. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1447821/
Thomas, J.F., Temple, J.R., Perez, N., & Rupp, R. (2011, February). Ethnic and gender disparities in needed adolescent mental health care. Journal of Health Care for the Poor Underserved (22)1: 101-110. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3133675/pdf/nihms304635.pdf
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health. (2016). Campaigns and Initiatives. Retrieved from http://minorityhealth.hhs.gov/omh/browse.aspx?lvl=2&lvlID=12