University Libraries.

Topics in Social Welfare: Health Disparities

In social work, examining health disparities is an important step in learning about the necessity of providing health improvement and support opportunities. Whether you're looking to conduct studies for the benefit of improving services and access through evidenced based promotion or you're simply interested in what disparities exist in health and healthcare services, keep reading for more!

Areas of Research

If you're unsure of where to start with this topic, it's important to know that health disparities are more likely to negatively impact marginalized groups - whether it be those with intellectual disabilities, minorities, those who are HIV-positive and others who are affected by systemic barriers. Health disparities also impact communities in different ways - we might immediately think of healthcare services or insurance coverage and eligibility, but health education is also an important subject to cover.

Research Assistance

One of the best databases to start your research with is PsycInfo, where you can simply search "health disparities" or combine it with a specific population; if you're interested in looking at the latinx community, you can use "latino / latina" or if you're interested in racial differences in general, you could use "racial and ethnic differences." Social Services Abstracts also provides good results, but the subject terms are a bit different; instead of using just "health disparities" you will want to combine "Health Care Services" AND "Access." If you want to narrow it down, you can add a subject such as "women," "transgender" and so on.

Databases and Helpful Links

Books and eBooks Available at Dewey

  • Bartley, M. (2017). Health inequality: An introduction to concepts, theories, and methods (2nd ed.). Malden: MA: Polity Press.
    Online / RA418 .B366 2017
  • Findley, S.E., & Matos, S. (2015). Bridging the gap: How community health workers promote the health of immigrants. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
    Online / RA448.5.I44 F56 2015
  • Garcia, R. (2015). On race and medicine: Insider perspectives. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield.
    Online / RA418 .O53 2015
  • Harvey, V.L., & Housel, T.H. (Eds.). Health care disparities and the LGBT population. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books.
    Online / RA564.9.H65 H42 2014 WWW
  • Oliver, V. (2013). Healing home: Health and homelessness in the life stories of young women. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.
    Dewey Library / RA564.9.H63 O45 2013
  • Ruffin, J. (2015). Going the distance: The making of a national health disparities research enterprise. Chicago, IL: Hilton Publishing.
    Dewey Library / RA563.M56 R84 2015

Need Additional Assistance?

Help is available! Contact Elaine Lasda, at (518) 442-3695 or Appointments are available - or drop in during weekly Social Welfare office hours from 4-7pm on Tuesdays.

Blog Created By: Kristen Thornton-De Stafeno
Image Credit: Kristen Thornton-De Stafeno

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