The racial and ethnic approaches in community health targeted the African American women from the rural parts of Alabama. The study was carried out by the University of Alabama, which was charged with the responsibility of coordinating the Alabama REACH 2010 Breast and Cervical Cancer Coalition (ABCCC). The study was focused on addressing challenges caused by cancer among the African American women. The study narrowed down to breast and cervical cancer.
The problem reviewed was the prevalence of breast cancer, which is a disease that is not commonly diagnosed among African American women. Essentially, breast cancer is predominant among white women. The disease has been attributed to many factors. It is regarded as the main cause of death in the African women population. It has also been observed that many African American women die from cervical cancer related cases.
There are various strategies that were used to combat the situation in this approach. The ABCCC strategy was one of the strategies that were used. This strategy came up with a community action plan to deal with the barriers that restricted African American women from accessing breast and cervical cancer screening services.
The action plan was comprised of various activities. This included creating of principal working groups that were made up of amateur volunteers, church representatives from the local communities, and professional health workers from each targeted region. The action plan also initiated the awarding of mini-grants to non-governmental organizations. This was only to NGOs that were actively involved in breast and cervical cancer awareness and screening programs within the targeted regions.
The program also carried out outreach activities to evaluate the current cancer screening status with a view to sustain and encourage future screenings. The action plan also distributed and disseminated educational materials to the local African American women population in the targeted regions.
The plan also instituted a breast and cervical cancer early detection program. The program was fully funded by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Further assistance was provided in the form of personal visits to encourage women to go for screening appointments. This also included calling and sending short text messages to remind the women of the need to keep their appointments.
In terms of allocation and the spread of the diverse activities that the study undertook, the resources, time, and money used in the program were accountable and satisfactory. In relation to creating of awareness, the program should have cast a wider net to include more people.
This could have been achieved through the involvement of local learning institutions. Racial and ethnic barriers stem from cultural backgrounds. The culture of going for frequent screening of cervical and breast cancer should be entrenched in women from a tender age. There is no other viable forum for educating young girls and women than engaging them at school and other community learning institutions.
The biggest barrier to the access of reliable and efficient medical care among the minority and marginalized groups is the cost of access to medical care. The cost of the provision and access to medical care has sharply risen over the past two decades. Offering free screening is not enough.
The next phase of the project would be to subsidize or facilitate access to health care. This will be by making health care free or accessed at affordable rates. The ABCCC should identify, facilitate, and subsidize the financial costs of health services in selected health centers across the selected regions.