Utah minority groups face unique health challenges. African American and Pacific Islander babies are significantly more likely to die before their first birthday than infants statewide. Hispanics are less likely to have access to needed medical care than any other Utah racial/ethnic group. All three of these groups have higher obesity rates than the statewide population. The new DVDs address these issues in a culturally and linguistically appropriate manner.
“This is part of the Department’s commitment to helping Utahns become the healthiest people in the nation, by eliminating health disparities and achieving health equity for all our citizens,” said Marc E. Babitz, MD, Director, UDOH Division of Family Health and Preparedness.
Utah community members who screened the videos had rave reviews. Jacob Fitisemanu, an OHD Advisory Board member, shared the video with his family.
“Some of them were really touched, wiping a tear once or twice during the video, because they thought it really spoke to their heart in a way that a doctor or school presenter had never been able to reach them before,” he reported. “I didn't expect that emotional response, but it resonated so well to see people like them speaking in their language and they were very impressed.”
“My family loved it,” said Joyce Ah You of the Queen Center. “My daughters were so impressed with the way the messages were conveyed. The filmmaker did an outstanding job speaking to the Pacific Islander community. What a wonderful project,” she added.
The videos include tips like how to prepare lower-fat, higher-fiber meals, taking care of your body during pregnancy, and pregnancy spacing. They also remind viewers that everyone should get an annual checkup, even if they're feeling healthy, because many common diseases often have no symptoms. They will be distributed to health care and community-based organizations to show in their waiting rooms or at community events. Copies will also be sent to churches and posted on YouTube.
The videos were recorded in Salt Lake, Summit, and Weber counties in partnership with local community-based organizations: the People's Health Clinic, Project Success, and the Queen Center. The videos were produced by Williams Visual Digital Films and Imaging.
View and download the videos at http://health.utah.gov/disparities/community/ForMeForUs.html.
April Young Bennett
Office of Health Disparities