(Albany, NY) – Under the leadership of Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, the Senate passed a comprehensive package of bills to address healthcare disparities in New York State.
“The Senate Democratic Majority is working aggressively to end the significant healthcare disparities in communities of color. This is only the start of addressing systemic inequalities in the medical field,” Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins said.
The package of nine bills passed last week, included: cultural awareness and competence trainings for medical professionals (S.1352), authorizing hospitals and home care providers to establish new programs to address disparities in healthcare access and treatment (S.1374), and creating a task force to study health literacy among certain groups to identify barriers and provide solutions in accessing medical services (S.1407).
“We will continue to break down the barriers in the healthcare sector that have led to severe implicit biases affecting diagnosis and care,” Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins said.
Other legislation passed, included, a bill (S.1451) to require any application for construction or a change to a hospital be accompanied by a health assessment to determine impact and bills (S.410A, S.646A) to study and address asthma risk factors in communities of color and large cities. Further, legislation was passed to help combat addiction treatment disparities and institute studies on how racial and ethnic disparities impact infant mortality and breastfeeding.
“Regardless of zip code, physical ability, gender, or race, everyone deserves equal access to quality treatment within the healthcare system. The legislation passed will not only alleviate the discriminatory obstacles minority New Yorkers face today, but it will also benefit the health and livelihood of our entire state,” Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins said.