Vulnerable and Underserved Populations

BUSI 511 Liberty University Essentials of the US Health Care Systems Discussion

Busi 511

Liberty University


Question Description


Please Draft a meaningful reply to another students discussion Board Post.

NOTE: The reply requires at least 3 sources with one of them being from : Shi, L. & Singh, D. A. (2019). Essentials of the U.S. Health Care System (5th ed.). Burlington, Massachusetts: Jones & Bartlett Learning.

Here is the post you are replying to:

Vulnerable and Underserved Populations

In the United States, significant disparities exist in healthcare for vulnerable populations. These groups include the economically disadvantaged and those who face discrimination. They experience more substantial risk factors, worse access to care, and increased morbidity and mortality than the general population (Shi & Singh, 2019, p. 252).

Low Income and Homeless Individuals

Primarily, the effect of illnesses can be more palpable in low-income individuals because of chronic diseases. Accordingly, this group may be less likely to have coverage. As a result, they have less interaction with the healthcare system. Moreover, people with low incomes have co-existing behavioral health conditions such as depression and substance use problems (Dickinson-Gomez, et al., 2017).


Housing and health care work best together to avert penury. This population necessitates longer-term support services to maintain housing. Communities that participate in affordable housing incur lesser public costs, attain better health outcomes, and pursue to prevent and end homelessness (Dickinson-Gomez, et al., 2017).

Major Challenges

Stable housing brings about privacy and safety. Patients can recover from surgery and other disorders without worrying about shelter and food. Similarly, stable housing assists in attuning their needs in obtaining health care and social services. Street and shelter conditions compromise the best, most coordinated medical services (Luchensi, et al., 2018). Care such as inpatient hospitalization, residential drug treatment, and mental health care do not have lasting impressions if an individual has to return to the streets or shelters upon discharge.

Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and Others (LGBTQ+) Population

Members of the LGBTQ+ community have avoided seeking medical care due to their fear of experiencing discrimination (Searle, 2019). Some of the social determinants that influence this community’s health include inequity in access to safe housing. Additionally, this population has a shortage of healthcare providers who are well-informed and culturally competent in LGBTQ+ health. A recent study has found that individuals who presented as transgender or gender nonconforming before their 18th birthday have a higher occurrence of mental health conditions. These include anxiety, depression, and attention-deficit disorders compared with their cisgender counterparts (Searle, 2019).


Healthcare systems need to securely and continuously gather sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI) data in national surveys and health records to address LGBTQ+ health issues. (Parker, et al., 2018). This data will permit researchers and policymakers to precisely depict this group’s health needs and disparities. Understanding this cluster’s health commences with grasping the history of subjugation and discrimination that they have encountered (Parker, et al., 2018). For instance, partially because bars and clubs were often the innocuous places where LGBTQ+ individuals could gather, alcohol abuse has been a continuing dilemma (Parker, et al., 2018).

Major Challenges

Studies imply that LGBTQ+ individuals suffer health disparities associated with societal stigma, discrimination, and repudiation of their civil and human rights (Nisly, et al., 2018). Discrimination against this community resulted in increased rates of psychiatric disorders, substance abuse, and suicide. Experiences of violence and victimization are common for LGBTQ+ individuals and incur long-term effects on the individual and the community (Nisly, et al., 2018). Thus, personal, family, and social acceptance of sexual orientation and gender identity influence these individuals’ mental health and personal safety.

Racial Minority Categories in the U.S.

The United States has stark and persistent racial disparities in health coverage, chronic health conditions, mental health, and mortality (Shepherd, et al., 2018). These inequities are not an outcome of any individual or group comportment, but decades of systematic divergence in American economic, housing, and healthcare systems (Shepherd, et al., 2018).

Health Challenges Compared with Caucasian Americans

The following items exuviate some of the most obstinate disproportions facing African Americans, Black Americans, Hispanic Americans, or Latinx Americans. Assuaging health disparities will involve a careful and continuous endeavor to address the social elements of health, including poverty, segregation, environmental degradation, and racial discrimination (Shepherd, et al., 2018).

African Americans or Black Americans

An African American or black individual is any person with total or partial lineage from any of the Black racial groups of Africa. Recent data presented the following:

  • In 2017, 10.6 percent of African Americans were uninsured compared with 5.9 percent of non-Hispanic whites (Berchick, et al., 2018).
  • In 2018, close to 9 percent of African American adults received mental health services compared with almost 20 percent of non-Hispanic white adults (Jones. et al., 2019).
  • Incidence and mortality rates in African and African American men are significantly elevated compared with other ethnicities. For example, they have the highest mortality rate for colorectal and prostate cancers, compared with any other racial and ethnic group (Augustus & Ellis, 2018; Lachance, et al., 2018).

Hispanic Americans or Latinx Americans

The federal government refers to Hispanic or Latino as an individual of Cuban, Mexican, Puerto Rican, South or Central American, or other Spanish culture or origin irrespective of race (Molina, et al., 2019). Recent information showed the following:

  • In 2017, more than 15 percent of Hispanics were uninsured compared to 6 percent of non-Hispanic whites (Molina, et al., 2019).
  • Ten percent of Hispanics noted having fair or poor health contrasted with 8 percent of non-Hispanic whites (Molina, et al., 2019).
  • In 2018, 9 percent of Hispanic adults obtained mental health services compared with almost 20 percent of non-Hispanic white adults (Mental and Behavioral, n.d.).

Scriptural Integration

The scriptures mentioned health, which encompasses the mind, body, and soul. 3 John 1:2 declared, “Beloved, I pray that in all respects, you may prosper and be in good health, just as your soul prospers” (New International Version, 2011). Without a healthy spirit, one cannot efficiently manage the physical and mental trials of life. Proverbs 18:14 stated this concept: “The spirit of a man will sustain his infirmities, but a wounded spirit, who can bear it?” (New International Version, 2011). Those who have devoted themselves to advance the health and welfare of those in their care must reflect on the total needs of a person and make every determination to address those needs in the context of every health determinant.


Augustus, G. J., & Ellis, N. A. (2018). Colorectal cancer disparity in African Americans: Risk factors and carcinogenic mechanisms. The American Journal of Pathology, 188(2), 291-303. doi:10.1016/j.ajpath.2017.07.023

Berchick, D., Hood, E., & Barnett, J. (2018, September 12). Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2017. United States Census Bureau. Retrieved from

Dickson-Gomez, J., McAuliffe, T., & Quinn, K. (2017). The effects of housing status, stability and the social contexts of housing on drug and sexual risk behaviors. AIDS and Behavior, 21(7), 2079-2092. doi:10.1007/s10461-017-1738-1

Jones, S. C. T., Brooks, J. H., Milam, A. J., Barajas, C. B., LaVeist, T. A., Kane, E., & Furr‐Holden, C. D. M. (2019). Racial discrimination, John Henryism coping, and behavioral health conditions among predominantly poor, urban African Americans: Implications for community‐level opioid problems and mental health services. Journal of Community Psychology, 47(5), 1032-1042. doi:10.1002/jcop.22168

Lachance, J., Berens, A. J., Hansen, M. E. B., Teng, A. K., Tishkoff, S. A., & Rebbeck, T. R. (2018). Genetic hitchhiking and population bottlenecks contribute to prostate cancer disparities in men of African descent. Cancer Research (Chicago, Ill.), 78(9), 2432-2443. doi:10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-17-1550

Luchenski, S., Maguire, N., Aldridge, R. W., Hayward, A., Story, A., Perri, P., . . . Hewett, N. (2018). What works in inclusion health: Overview of effective interventions for marginalized and excluded populations. The Lancet (British Edition), 391(10117), 266-280. doi:10.1016/s0140-6736(17)31959-1

Mental and Behavioral Health – Hispanics. (n.d.). U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health. Retrieved from Accessed on 8/10/2020.

Molina, K. M., Estrella, M. L., Durazo-Arvizu, R., Malcarne, V. L., Llabre, M. M., Isasi, C. R., . . . Daviglus, M. L. (2019). Perceived discrimination and physical health-related quality of life: The Hispanic community health study/study of Latinos (HCHS/SOL) sociocultural ancillary study. Social Science & Medicine (1982), 222, 91-100. doi:10.1016/j.socscimed.2018.12.038

Nisly, N. L., Imborek, K. L., Miller, M. L., Dole, N., Priest, J. B., Sandler, L., . . . Hightower, M. (2018). Developing an inclusive and welcoming LGBTQ clinic. Clinical Obstetrics and Gynecology, 61(4), 646-662. doi:10.1097/GRF.0000000000000405

Parker, C. M., Hirsch, J. S., Philbin, M. M., & Parker, R. G. (2018). The urgent need for research and interventions to address family-based stigma and discrimination against LGBTQ youth. The Journal of Adolescent Health: Official Publication of the Society for Adolescent Medicine, 63(4), 383-393. doi:10.1016/j.jadohealth.2018.05.018

Searle, J. (2019). Queer phenomenology, the disruption of heteronormativity, and structurally responsive care. Advances in Nursing Science, 42(2), 109-122. doi:10.1097/ans.0000000000000258

Shepherd, S. M., Willis-Esqueda, C., Paradies, Y., Sivasubramaniam, D., Sherwood, J., & Brockie, T. (2018). Racial and cultural minority experiences and perceptions of health care provision in a mid-western region. International Journal for Equity in Health, 17(1), 33-10. doi:10.1186/s12939-018-0744-x

Shi, L. & Singh, D. A. (2019). Essentials of the U.S. Health Care System (5th ed.). Burlington, Massachusetts: Jones & Bartlett Learning.