Health Disparities and Socioeconomic Status

The Relationship between Socioeconomic Status and Health Disparity

The economic and social well-being of a person or society is related to their socioeconomic standing. Major variables including income, occupation, and educational attainment are the main determinants of it. Socioeconomic status has been identified as a key contributor to health disparity, and it creates differences in how people in society receive health care services. According to socioeconomic differences between people, those with greater incomes and educational levels likely to access better health care services than those with lower incomes and educational levels. On the other hand, enabling a diversified workforce guarantees improvement in the healthcare delivery through the provision of competent healthcare to the minority groups and conducting a further need-assessment research study (Cohen & Gabriel, 2002). Therefore, despite other factors such as race and age causing health disparity, socioeconomic status is a major cause of health inequality and disparity.

The Impact of Income Levels on Health and Nutrition

The American citizens have different income levels, and this contributes to the kind of lifestyle they have and the kind of nutrition they maintain. Individuals with a high-income level exercise healthy measures through enacting physical excises through gyms as a means to keep fit. The individuals do not spend their entire day shifting from workplaces since they have enough income to cater for their bills (Braveman, Cubbin, et al., 2010). On the other hand, the kind of food and diet maintained by individuals with a high-income level is different from the individuals with low-income levels. This causes the individuals with a higher income levels to maintain high healthy standards and enables them to access high standard medical services.

Education Levels and Health Standards

Education levels also determine the kind of health standards maintained by different individuals. A Higher level of educations provides individuals with the opportunity to access information regarding health measures, and such information helps the individuals to promote a better health living (Adler & Newman, 2002). Various studies also indicate that early education programs provided to preschoolers is also an important factor to promote healthy measures to the young generation. In cases where young children acquire information regarding a healthy living, they begin to practices such health standards as early as possible. On the other hand, better education provides better occupations to individuals. Individuals who work in industrial areas with more exposure to chemical emissions are more likely to suffer health problems.

The Benefits of a Diversified Healthcare Workforce

Indeed, the healthcare workforce can provide better healthcare delivery through a diversified means. It is evident that increasing the ethnic and racial diversity of the healthcare workers enables a widespread provision of competent care to the varying minority groups (Cohen & Gabriel, 2002). A diversified health care workforce will put more emphasis on helping the low-income and uneducated individuals in society. In addition, the diversified workforce will foster research in the abandoned areas of societal needs thus assisting the policymakers in meeting the needs of such individuals.

The Need for Fundamental Reforms for a Diversified Healthcare Workforce

Achieving a diversified health care workforce across the nation is not easy and requires fundamental reforms of our precollege education systems (Cohen & Gabriel, 2002). Through achieving the diversity in health care, health patients of different culture and race will identify themselves with some specific medical professionals thus gaining the courage to access medical services. Since racial effects occur as one of the major health disparity factors, minimizing such cases may provide a significant improvement in the nation.


In conclusion, health disparity is caused by many factors such as race, age, gender, geographical location, and socioeconomic status of individuals. The socioeconomic status of individuals could be assessed through income levels, education levels, and occupation of individuals. On the other hand, enabling a diversified workforce guarantees improvement in the health sector since the health practitioners may reach out to the minority groups and provide information on the needs to be provided. Therefore, it is evident that a diversified healthcare workforce will provide significant improvements in the health care delivery.


Adler, N. E., & Newman, K. (2002). Socioeconomic Disparities In Health: Pathways And Policies. Health Affairs, 21(2), 60-76. doi:10.1377/hlthaff.21.2.60

Braveman, P. A., Cubbin, C., Egerter, S., Williams, D. R., & Pamuk, E. (2010). Socioeconomic Disparities in Health in the United States: What the Patterns Tell Us. American Journal of Public Health, 100(S1), S186-S196. doi:10.2105/ajph.2009.166082

Cohen, J. J., & Gabriel, B. A. (2002). The Case For Diversity In The Health Care Workforce. Health Affairs, 21(5), 90-102. doi:10.1377/hlthaff.21.5.90

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