FARE, the world's leading non-governmental organization engaged in food allergy advocacy and the largest private funder of food allergy research, released "Equity Equals Excellence – A Blueprint for Access," which is designed to address systemic racial and economic inequity in patient care for diseases like food allergy by expanding access to treatment, research and trusted information in underrepresented communities.
The Blueprint is the culmination of FARE's Roundtable Series on DEIA (Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Access), which brought together leaders in food allergy and DEIA authorities in other disease areas and fields for in-depth discussions to identify obstacles to high-quality care and to find equitable solutions.
Racial inequality has long existed in healthcare, and food allergy is no exception. Underrepresented and under-resourced communities experience significant health disparities relating to food allergy prevalence, diagnosis and treatment. In food allergy, research has shown that Black children are more likely to develop the disease than white children but are less likely to have access to an allergist or to epinephrine, the only effective medication that can halt severe symptoms during an allergic reaction. Further, children covered by Medicaid are much less likely to receive a doctor's diagnosis of food allergy than other children in the U.S. overall.
Dr. Kaye Cole is a member of FARE's Board of National Ambassadors and one of the professionals of color leading the call for access and research. "Historically marginalized communities in this country have long been unfairly denied access to their basic privileges and human rights," said Dr. Kay Cole. "Our goal here is to embrace and empower these communities with safe, brave spaces for accessing the resources that can enhance their quality of life as they cope with these allergies."
FARE launched a key equity initiative in Newark, N.J. to gather input from community members managing food allergies and to identify local priorities for food allergy awareness, training and support programs in this underserved area. This program is the template for a nationwide initiative that will be rolled out during the year.
To learn more, visit Living Teal™ YouTube channel or www.foodallergy.org.