Minority Health, Office of


To provide services so that all racial and ethnic minority populations in Rhode Island will have equal opportunity to live safe and healthy lives in safe and healthy communities. To facilitate access to health information, education and risk reduction activities for racial and ethnic minority communities and to develop policies, plans and tracking systems for ensuring that the needs of these communities are integrated and addressed within all Department of Health programs.

2010 Accomplishments and Milestones

  • During the FY08-FY10 funding cycle, Minority Health Promotion Centers (MHPC) served more than 49,398 first time clients and almost 17,000 returning clients.
  • 71% of MHPC clients reported having access to interpreter services offered on site.
  • MHPC Coordinators achieved a 93.64% completion rate on client referrals in 2010.

Other Information

The Minority Health Advisory Committee met several times and reviewed health status indicators for racial and ethnic minority populations as compared to the majority white non-Hispanic population in Rhode Island. At the conclusion of the review period, the committee determined that the minority health promotion funds be awarded to not-for-profit community-based organizations that develop and implement Comprehensive Minority Health Promotion Centers that address the preventable health conditions which lead to premature death for minority populations.

What We Do

  • Individual and Community Health Risk Assessment - MHPC develop and incorporate strategies for identifying the health problems of the population to be served and the resources available to address them Community forums, key informant interviews, health risk assessments, review of published reports and surveys are encouraged as other strategies that can be utilized for identifying community health risks.
  • Community Outreach - MHPC utilize appropriate methods of outreach in order to identify racial and ethnic minority populations who are in need of health education, information, risk reduction activities and access to care Outreach may include the use of print and radio media, door-to-door outreach, direct mailings, posting of materials and other methods for reaching groups of people to inform them of the programs offered by the MHPC and other HEALTH programs.
  • Health Education and Health Promotion- Health education and promotion focuses on educating community members about health conditions for which minority populations experience a disproportionate burden. Each MHPC were asked to develop a work plan that addresses no more then 5 total health disparity indicators through education and promotion activities.
  • Consumer Empowerment - MHPC also design and implement consumer empowerment strategies. Consumer empowerment strategies may include, but are not limited to:
  • Providing community members with vital information needed to make informed decisions about their health care choices (e.g., how to choose a health care provider, what types of health care services are available within the community, even preparation of an advanced directive or health care proxy; explaining the difference between primary care services versus emergency room services and how to access each appropriately);
  • Providing community members with information on various types of insurance and other entitlements that can be used to defray the cost of health care services.
  • Health Information Center - Each MHPC established a physical and identifiable health information area. The health information area will contain information and materials pertaining to the health topics to be addressed through health education and empowerment activities. Each MHPC were encouraged to utilize existing HEALTH materials.