Health Disparities

Different segments of the population have different health needs and outcomes. Incidence of diseases and even responses to treatments vary by gender, age, race, ethnicity, geography, and environment. Understanding these differences is essential to making sound policy and clinical decisions, and informed personal choices.

NORC is adept at surveying disparate and often difficult-to-reach populations. Our researchers have successfully worked through cultural, language, and economic barriers to gather reliable data on a variety of health issues including access to care, environmental factors that infl uence health, and attitudes about the health care system. Additionally, NORC has helped the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Offi ce of Minority Health manage and evaluate the performance of their program activities.

Representative Projects

Health Care Innovation Awards Evaluation - Complex/High-Risk Patient Targeting. ​The Health Care Innovation Awards (HCIAs) fund 107 initiatives across the country that propose compelling new ideas to further the three-part aim of better care for the individual, better health for populations, and lower costs through improvement of the care delivery process. Twenty three (23) of these initiatives focus on addressing the needs of medically fragile, complex, and high risk patients who are high users of medical and long-term care services and supports.​ More

Medicare Beneficiary Outcomes in Rural and Urban Home Health Agencies. This study was conducted to determine whether rural and urban home care agencies differ in terms of patient care outcomes, and to ascertain whether there are agency characteristics that are associated with better or worse outcomes. More

National Immunization Survey. The National Immunization Survey (NIS) produces high-quality estimates on the rate of immunization among young children in the U.S., considered a critical contributor to the prevention of childhood diseases. Administered by NORC at the University of Chicago since 2005, the NIS is one of the largest telephone surveys in the nation and its data are considered the gold standard for public health surveillance on immunization rates.  More

Public Reporting of Health Quality and Efficiency Measures. Under a contract with ASPE, NORC conducted a comprehensive environmental scan of current and developing HHS public reporting programs, developed a report on federal and state statutory and regulatory requirements related to public reporting, and supported the HHS Public Reporting Workgroup. The final product for this project was a companion report to the National Quality Strategy—Prioritizing the Public in HHS Public Reporting—currently posted on the Working for Quality website. More

Racial and Ethnic Approaches to Community Health Across the U.S. (REACH U.S.) Risk Factor Survey. The Racial and Ethnic Approaches to Community Health Across the U.S. (REACH U.S.) program is the cornerstone of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) efforts to eliminate racial and ethnic health disparities. NORC conducts two projects related to CDC’s REACH U.S. program. NORC conducts an annual survey in 28 REACH U.S. grantee communities to provide quantitative data to measure progress toward eliminating racial and ethnic health disparities in several health priority areas. NORC also uses existing data and a literature review to assess the role of cultural tailoring and translation on grantees’ activities related to policy, system and environmental changes.  More

Surveying Small Employers to Inform the Design of State Marketplaces. ​The Affordable Care Act (ACA) changed many of the rules of the small employer market, defined as firms with 50 or fewer employees.The objective of this study is to examine changes in the small employer market changed in the first year of the ACA.  More

The Baltimore Health Values Survey. The Baltimore Health Values Survey is sponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and will help inform local organizations working to improve the health of Baltimore. We want to know the opinions of Baltimore residents so that health improvement efforts can be strengthened there and around the nation. Households were chosen at random to participate. Although participation is voluntary, it is very important that we include each household chosen because they have been scientifically selected and cannot be replaced. The participation of each chosen household is needed to get a complete picture of Baltimore opinions. NORC at the University of Chicago is conducting this survey on behalf of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. More

The Mobile Health Values Survey. ​The Mobile Health Values Survey is sponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and will help inform local organizations working to improve the health of Mobile. We want to know the opinions of Mobile residents so that health improvement efforts can be strengthened there and around the nation. Households were chosen at random to participate. Although participation is voluntary, it is very important that we include each household chosen because they have been scientifically selected and cannot be replaced. The participation of each chosen household is needed to get a complete picture of Mobile opinions. NORC at the University of Chicago is conducting this survey on behalf of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. More

The North Central Nebraska Health Values Survey. ​The North Central Nebraska Health Values Survey is sponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and will help inform local organizations working to improve the health of North Central Nebraska. We want to know the opinions of North Central Nebraska residents so that health improvement efforts can be strengthened there and around the nation. Households were chosen at random to participate. Although participation is voluntary, it is very important that we include each household chosen because they have been scientifically selected and cannot be replaced. The participation of each chosen household is needed to get a complete picture of North Central Nebraska opinions. NORC at the University of Chicago is conducting this survey on behalf of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. More

The Stockton Health Values Survey. The Stockton Health Values Survey is sponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and will help inform local organizations working to improve the health of Stockton. We want to know the opinions of Stockton residents so that health improvement efforts can be strengthened there and around the nation. Households were chosen at random to participate. Although participation is voluntary, it is very important that we include each household chosen because they have been scientifically selected and cannot be replaced. The participation of each chosen household is needed to get a complete picture of Stockton opinions. NORC at the University of Chicago is conducting this survey on behalf of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. More

See all Health Disparities projects