Briefing — Black Health Equity

About This Event



A healthy California for all requires a health care system designed to redress, and not perpetuate, the inequities that too many Californians — especially Black Californians — face.

Health is a key value for Black Americans, who are among the groups most likely to say they always make their health a priority. But pervasive barriers in the health care system prevent them from achieving the health they actively seek. Health Disparities by Race and Ethnicity in California: Pattern of Inequity found that while the average Californian lives to be 81, the average Black Californian lives only to age 75. And Black Californians experience the highest death rates from breast, cervical, colorectal, lung, and prostate cancer, despite having higher health insurance coverage rates than the state average.

As part of its commitment to ending health inequities, CHCF partnered with EVITARUS, a Black-owned public opinion research firm in Los Angeles, to understand Black Californians’ experiences of racism and the powerful influence it wields over their health care and outcomes. The Listening to Black Californians study included a survey of 3,325 Black Californian adults, in-depth interviews with 100 Black Californians, and 18 statewide focus groups — to date, it is one of the largest studies focused on the health care experiences of Black Californians.

On October 5, CHCF held a briefing that examined the health care challenges so many Black Californians face despite their pursuit of good health. The briefing also highlighted strategies for advancing Black health equity.



Sandra R. Hernández, MD
President and CEO, (opening remarks)

Katherine Haynes, MBA
Senior Program Officer, People-Centered Care, CHCF

Kenna Chic
Health Equity Fellow, State Health Policy, CHCF

Shakari Byerly, MPP
Partner and Principal Researcher, EVITARUS


Traco Matthews, MBA
Chief Health Equity Officer, Kern Health Systems

Brenda Shipp, MBA
Chief Operations and Chief Compliance Officer, WellSpace Health
Board Chair, California Black Health Network

Mary Watanabe
Director, California Department of Managed Health Care

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