Written by Marilyn Crawford, HAWA Health Founder and CEO, and Tommy Crawford, HAWA Health Director of Client Services
At HAWA Health, we believe Black lives matter and fully support the movement and fight for the equality of Black Americans. As a company, we cannot stand by idly and continue to let history repeat itself. The healthcare and wellness industry, in particular, is experienced very differently based solely on the color of ones skin. Heath inequality is a very serious and real problem in our county, leading to Black Americans having higher rates of diabetes, hypertension, and heart disease than other groups of people.* An article from 2016 by U.S. News titled "Being Black Is Bad For Your Health" speaks to research stating, "if blacks and whites had the same mortality rate, nearly 100,000 fewer black people would die each year in the United States."** That's roughly 274 unnecessary deaths every single day. This already terrible situation has been further exacerbated by the COVID-19 Pandemic.
These health issues -- diabetes, hypertension and heart disease -- are some of the main issues we strive to help our members reduce their risk factors for. We can't effectively accomplish our mission without acknowledging the inequities Black Americans face and changing the way we operate to better support their needs. Throughout the past few weeks, we have been using our time to listen, educate ourselves and self-reflect. As a tele-wellness provider, we can have a real impact on the care received by the Black community and will continue having conversations about how we can be a part of a solution.
*Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health
** U.S. News