Office of Minority Health
Who we are
The Office of Minority Health (OMH) was created in 1986 and is one of the most significant outcomes of the 1985 Secretary's Task Force Report on Black and Minority Health. The Office is dedicated to improving the health of racial and ethnic minority populations through the development of health policies and programs that will help eliminate health disparities. OMH was reauthorized by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (P.L. 111-148).
Why we were established
Poor health outcomes for African Americans, Hispanic Americans, American Indians and Alaska Natives, Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders are apparent when comparing their health indicators against those of the rest of the U.S. population. These populations experience higher rates of illness and death from health conditions such as heart disease, stroke, specific cancers, diabetes, HIV/AIDS, asthma, hepatitis B, and overweight and obesity. OMH's primary responsibility is to improve health and healthcare outcomes for racial and ethnic minority communities by developing or advancing policies, programs, and practices that address health, social, economic, environmental and other factors which impact health.
What we do
OMH programs address disease prevention, health promotion, risk reduction, healthier lifestyle choices, use of health care services, and barriers to health care. The Office also:
- promotes the collection of health data by racial, ethnic, and primary language categories and strengthening infrastructures for data collection, reporting, and sharing;
- works to increase awareness of the major health problems of racial and ethnic minorities and factors that influence health;
- establishes and strengthens networks, coalitions, and partnerships to identify and solve health problems;
- develops and promotes policies, programs, and practices to eliminate health disparities and achieve health equity;
- fosters research, demonstrations, scientific investigations, and evaluations aimed at improving health;
- funds demonstration programs that can inform health policy and the effectiveness of strategies for improving health.
How we accomplish our work
OMH works in partnership with communities and organizations in the public and private sectors. These collaborations support a systems approach for eliminating health disparities, national planning to identify priorities, and coordinated responses through focused initiatives. OMH provides funding to state offices of minority health, multicultural health, and health equity; community and faith-based organizations, institutions of higher education, tribes and tribal organizations; and other organizations dedicated to improving health.
National Partnership for Action to End Health Disparities (NPA)
The purpose of the National Partnership for Action to End Health Disparities (NPA) is to improve nationwide cohesion and coordination of strategies and actions to eliminate health disparities and achieve health equity. The NPA has five goals:
- increasing awareness;
- strengthening leadership at all levels;
- improving health and healthcare outcomes;
- improving cultural and linguistic competency; and
- improving data availability, and coordination, utilization, and diffusion of research and evaluation outcomes.
OMH Resource Center
The OMH Resource Center is a one stop shop for minority health literature, research, and referrals. The center also provides technical assistance to community organizations on HIV/AIDS. Call toll free 1-800-444-6472, to speak with bilingual (English/Spanish) information specialists, or visit minorityhealth.hhs.gov.
Cultural and Linguistic Competency
OMH is committed to culturally and linguistically competent systems that will ensure the needs of minority communities are integrated and addressed within health-related programs across the nation. For information on OMH's portfolio of cultural competency training, visit thinkculturalhealth.hhs.gov.
Last Modified: 08/16/2011 12:58:00 PM