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Reducing Health Disparities and Improving Health Equity in Saint Lucia

1,*,†, 2,†, 3,†, 1,†, 1,† and 1,†
Satcher Health Leadership Institute, Morehouse School of Medicine, 720 Westview Drive SW, Atlanta, GA 30310, USA
Victoria Hospital, Hospital Road, Castries P.O. Box 1750, St. Lucia
Tapion Hospital, Tapion Road, Castries P.O. Box 1780, St. Lucia
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Academic Editors: Mark Edberg, Barbara E. Hayes, Valerie Montgomery Rice and Paul B. Tchounwou
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2016, 13(1), 37;
Received: 15 August 2015 / Revised: 4 November 2015 / Accepted: 9 November 2015 / Published: 22 December 2015
PDF [218 KB, uploaded 22 December 2015]


St. Lucia is an island nation in the Eastern Caribbean, with a population of 179,000 people, where chronic health conditions, such as hypertension and diabetes, are significant. The purpose of this pilot study is to create a model for community health education, tracking, and monitoring of these health conditions, research training, and policy interventions in St. Lucia, which may apply to other Caribbean populations, including those in the U.S. This paper reports on phase one of the study, which utilized a mixed method analytic approach. Adult clients at risk for, or diagnosed with, diabetes (n = 157), and health care providers/clinic administrators (n = 42), were recruited from five healthcare facilities in St. Lucia to assess their views on health status, health services, and improving health equity. Preliminary content analyses indicated that patients and providers acknowledge the relatively high prevalence of diabetes and other chronic illnesses, recognize the impact that socioeconomic status has on health outcomes, and desire improved access to healthcare and improvements to healthcare infrastructures. These findings could inform strategies, such as community education and workforce development, which may help improve health outcomes among St. Lucians with chronic health conditions, and inform similar efforts among other selected populations. View Full-Text
Keywords: St. Lucia; diabetes; hypertension; health equity St. Lucia; diabetes; hypertension; health equity
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Holden, K.; Charles, L.; King, S.; McGregor, B.; Satcher, D.; Belton, A. Reducing Health Disparities and Improving Health Equity in Saint Lucia. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2016, 13, 37.

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