In all four of the articles that form this Symposium, the authors identify troubling disparities and injustices in our healthcare system and suggest strategies to ameliorate these problems. Sadly, the reforms of the Obama administration will probably do little to address these issues directly. The mandated insurance coverage requirement, for example, applies to U.S. citizens and legal residents, but not, unsurprisingly, to undocumented immigrants? Similarly, the legislation expands public programs but does nothing directly to support the burden of EMT ALA's unfunded mandate on hospitals. And, as the evidence has long demonstrated, insurance coverage alone fails to guarantee equal medical treatment.
The problem of racial disparities in healthcare remain systemically part of the larger problem of race relations in the United States-politically charged, difficult to isolate from the surrounding complexities of our woefully inefficient healthcare payment and delivery "system," underappreciated in significance, and often lost in favor of the latest media blitz about a cutting edge cure for a rare disease or a "miracle" recovery from a devastating injury. The authors of these symposium articles very effectively draw attention to these racial disparities.
10 Hous. J. Health L. & Pol'y 195 (2010)