Health Disparities Legislation


Alternative Text

In recent years policymakers have recognized the disparities experienced by various populations and related financial costs to the health care system and state. A 2017 report by NCSL highlights different state actions regarding health disparities legislation related to:

  • Improving access to health care services.
  • Increasing health care workforce diversity and cultural competency.
  • Addressing disparities in chronic disease and other health conditions racial and ethnic minorities experience.
  • Supporting task forces, committees or research focused on health disparities.
  • Addressing social determinants of health.

In the wake of COVID-19, and the evidence highlighting health disparities among historically underserved populations, several states have changed data reporting requirements, increased equitable access to referral systems, required different state executive branch agencies to study, update and implement policies that address health disparities where applicable, and issued executive orders and declared racism as public health crisis

Below is a list of legislation enacted in 2020-2021 that addresses health disparities and/or health equity.*

*While other policies may directly or indirectly affect health disparities, the table below includes only legislation that explicitly states that the actions address health disparities. You may be interested in browsing related legislation in the following databases and webpages:

For more information on disparities in health, click here


Health Disparities Legislation Enacted 2020 - 2021


Year Enacted

Bill Number




AL SJR 106

Recognizes the first report of the state's Maternal Mortality Review Committee and calls for continued funding to better understand barriers to health care access, racial and ethnic disparities and social determinants of health.



AL SJR 107

Creates the Chronic Weight Management and Type 2 Diabetes Task Force. Recognizes significant health disparities that lead to increased vulnerability to COVID-19 and other health conditions that disproportionately affect Black Alabamians.



AZ S 1181

Creates a voluntary state-certified doula program to expand health and wellness, to reduce health disparities and to promote culturally relevant practices within diverse communities.



CA A 2218

Establishes the Transgender Wellness and Equity Fund to support transgender, gender nonconforming and intersex (TGI) specific partnerships with hospitals, health care clinics and other medical providers to provide TGI-focused health care and health education.



CA A 74

Allocates funds to support activities addressing health disparities for lesbian, bisexual and queer women and local community-defined mental health programs.



CA A 128

Establishes an equity dashboard, which shall be informed by the annual State Department of Public Health reporting on health disparities adopted by the legislature as part of public health infrastructure investments. Requires the California Health and Human Services Agency to submit an analysis identifying inequities in all major health and human services programs and possible strategies to address these inequities. Allocates funds for grants to community-based organizations to address health disparities.



CA A 133

Requires the Department of Managed Health Care to convene a Health Equity and Quality Committee to make recommendations to the department for standard health equity and quality measures. Requires each Medi-Cal managed care plan to develop and maintain a beneficiary-centered population health management program that meets specified standards, including identifying and mitigating social determinants of health and reducing health disparities or inequities. Expands behavioral health and perinatal health initiatives to address disparities and social determinants of health.

  2021 CA A 1204 Requires hospitals to prepare and annually submit an equity report to include an analysis of health status and access to care disparities on the basis of specified categories, including age, sex, and race. Also requires hospitals to prepare and submit a health equity plan to reduce disparities.
  2021 CA A 1407 Requires approved nursing schools and programs to require implicit bias training.
  2021 CA S 170 Appropriates funds to address COVID-190 health disparities among high-risk and underserved populations, including racial and ethnic minority populations, and rural communities.



CO H 1197

Maximizes statewide efforts to increase access to equity within the statewide communication system for referral to essential health services due to the presence of COVID-19.



CO H 1097

Establishes a single state agency, known as the Behavioral Health Administration, to lead and promote the state’s behavioral health priorities following recommendations of the behavioral health task force. Includes provisions to address social determinants of health and reduce behavioral health disparities.



CO H 1171

Creates the kidney disease prevention and education task force to develop a sustainable plan to raise awareness about early detection of kidney disease and promote health equity, citing that Black Americans are about 4 times more likely and Hispanic Americans are about 1.6 times more likely than white Americans to suffer from kidney failure.



CO H 1232

Requires health insurance carriers to offer standardized health benefit plans in the individual and small group insurance marketplaces. Includes certain provisions to improve racial equity and decrease disparities, such as improving insurance coverage for perinatal health care, primary care and behavioral health services.



CO H 1266

Concerns efforts to redress the effects of environmental injustice on disproportionately impacted communities by requiring analyses of potential negative environmental or public health impacts to disproportionately impacted communities and identifying recommendations for reducing environmental health disparities.



CO H 1289

Concerns broadband deployment to improve access throughout the state to help overcome economic, health care, education and government-access inequities.



CO S 181

Renames the existing health disparities grant program to the health disparities and community grant program and expands the program to authorize the office of health equity. Requires a biannual assessment and report on the impact of social determinants of health on health disparities and inequities and recommended strategies to address them. Requires the governor to convene a commission for a strategic plan to coordinate equity-related work across the state agencies.



CO S 194

Directs the maternal mortality review committee to take certain actions to study and make recommendations related to maternal mortality, including in relation to racial and ethnic disparities, bias, data collection, and hospital/health system reporting.



CO S 260

Mitigates environmental and health impacts of transportation system use to reduce health disparities in disproportionately impacted communities resulting from increased exposure to motor vehicle fleet emissions.



CT S 1

Establishes a Commission on Racial Equity in Public Health to document and make recommendations to decrease the effect of racism on public health. Sets provisions for the commission’s work to address health equity in the state. Requires the state maternal mortality review committee to submit an annual report that may include recommendations to reduce or eliminate racial inequities and other public health concerns regarding maternal mortality and severe maternal morbidity in the state. Requires hospitals to include implicit bias training for perinatal providers.



CT S 1008

Concerning health equity, requires the insurance commissioner, in consultation with the commissioner of public health, to adopt regulations to ensure that each health care provider, health carrier, pharmacist, pharmacy and pharmacy benefits manager doing business in the state is informed that a pulse oximeter is more likely to produce an inaccurate blood oxygen level reading for an insured person who is an individual of color.

Delaware 2021 DE S 120 Directs the Health Care Commission to monitor compliance with value-based care delivery models and develop alternative payment methods that promote value-based care, including rewarding primary care services that are designed to reduce health disparities and address social determinants of health.



FL HR 8011

Celebrates Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University’s Work to address health disparities by increasing the number of minority research investigators and promoting minority health.



FL H 183

Requires the Office of Minority Health and Health Equity to develop and promote the statewide implementation of certain policies, programs and practices, including supporting better information dissemination and education about health disparities to improve access to and delivery of health care services to racial and ethnic minority populations.



FL H 1381

Requires the department of health to establish telehealth minority maternity care pilot programs and decrease racial and ethnic disparities in severe maternal morbidity and mortality, including screening for social determinants of health risks and addressing health professional shortage areas.



GA HR 1111

Celebrates the Georgia Council on Lupus Education and Awareness’ efforts to address lupus related health disparities.



GA S 482

Provides for the collection, compilation and public reporting of health-related performance information regarding health disparities, outcomes, cost and utilization.



GA HR 1083

Recognizes the Georgia Association of Black Women Attorneys and the Georgia Association for Women Lawyers Legislative Day for “Maternal Mortality in Georgia: an Epidemic for Black Women,” on February 6, 2020.



HI S 3117

Extends the Emergency Department Homelessness Assessment Pilot Program and Medical Respite Pilot Program to address disparities that homeless individuals experience in health and mortality.



ID H 509

Updates vital record information to include mortality rates based on age and sex, to help track and diagnose disparities, as well as inform solutions on socioeconomic inequalities.



IL S 1864

Requires the Kidney Disease Prevention and Education Task Force to develop a plan to promote health equity.



IL S 2541

Requires the Department of Healthcare and Family Services to provide a report to the General Assembly that includes policies and practices to reduce health disparities in vulnerable communities.



IL S 1510

Establishes a health care transformation program to address health care equity. Includes the formation of a work group that includes subject matter experts on health care disparities and stakeholders from affected communities to review and provide recommendations on how policy can improve health disparities and the impact on communities disproportionately affected by COVID-19.



IL H 158

Health Care and Human Services Reform Act. Includes the creation of a funding pool to be disbursed among safety net hospitals to address infant mortality rates among communities of color in Illinois. Directs the State Health Assessment and State Health Improvement Plan to assess and recommend priorities and strategies to improve the public health system, reduce health disparities and inequities, address social determinants of health and promote health equity. Requires implicit bias training in continuing education requirements for health care professionals. Also calls for review of care coordination and case management efforts to focus on social determinants of health and state managed care contracts to partner with women and minority-owned businesses to promote health equity.



IL H 3308

Requires a report to study telehealth coverage and reimbursement policies to determine if the policies improve access to care, reduce health disparities and promote health equity.



IL S 2017

Appropriates funds to address COVID-related disparities in public health outcomes and exacerbation of pre-existing disparities in low-income and socially vulnerable communities, including racial, ethnic and socioeconomic disparities.

  2021 IL H 3504 Requires the department of public health to administer an annual Healthy Illinois Survey to identify health concerns for communities across Illinois, including gathering sufficient data to help identify policies and interventions that address health inequities.
  2021 IL S 1840 Requires hospital community benefits plans to describe activities a hospital is undertaking to address health equity, reduce health disparities and improve community health.
  2021 IL H 370 The Youth Health and Safety Act “seeks to restate Illinois' commitment to full and equitable access to reproductive health care for all persons across the state, without barriers based on race or ethnicity, immigration status, age, geographic location, economic means, education level, or other categories of identity.”



IN H 1001

Appropriates funds for the Indiana Minority Health Coalition Inc. to address COVID-19 disparities in accessing health care and chronic health conditions in communities of color.



IN H 1007

Relates to the State Health Improvement Plan and Grant Program. Specifies that the state department may give priority to proposals that will address health disparities and organizations representing people of color.



IN H 1177

Requires the strategic plan on dementia to recommend strategies to decrease health disparities concerning dementia in ethnic and racial populations in Indiana. Also requires the plan to identify strategies to promote culturally appropriate public health campaigns to increase understanding and awareness of early warning symptoms of dementia and the value of early detection and diagnosis.



KY S 10

Creates the Commission on Race and Access to Opportunity to conduct studies and research on issues where disparities may exist across the sectors of educational equity, child welfare, health, economic opportunity, juvenile justice, criminal justice and any other sectors that are deemed relevant in an effort to identify areas of improvement in providing services and opportunities for minority communities.




Directs the Cabinet for Health and Family Services to create an advisory committee to establish a pilot program to investigate funding mechanisms for a diversion program for treatment and recovery housing services for individuals with substance use disorder who have been arrested for substance use disorder-related offenses. Recognizes supportive recovery housing's role in addressing social determinants of health and reducing recidivism.



LA SR 74

Urges and requests the Department of Health to study and report on the matter of racial disparities in COVID-19 death rates in the state.



LA S 133

Requires the Louisiana Department of Health to be responsible for leading, consolidating, and coordinating efforts across the state toward improving women's health outcomes, including best practices and protocols for treating communities with underlying conditions and health disparities.



ME LD 274

Directs the Maine Health Data Organization to determine the best methods and definitions to use in collecting data to assist in analyzing the origins of racial and ethnic disparities in health care in the state and to submit a report with suggested legislation by a certain date.



ME LD 1113

Directs the Permanent Commission on the Status of Racial, Indigenous and Maine Tribal Populations to study and propose solutions to disparities in access to prenatal care in the state.



ME LD 1548

Resolves to alleviate the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 and public health outcomes. Directs the health department to identify programs designed to address health disparities among historically disadvantaged communities, including the federally recognized Indian tribes, nations and bands in the state.



ME LD 1733

Provides one-time funds to support development of a strategy and one-time investments in public health infrastructure to reduce disparities in outcomes for minority groups.



MD H 1169

Requires nonprofit hospitals to report their efforts to track and reduce health disparities in their communities.




MD H 286

Requires that the racial and ethnic diversity of the women most impacted by maternal deaths are reflected in the attendees of the Maternal Mortality Review Program’s stakeholder meetings.




MD H 837

Requires the Cultural and Linguistic Health Care Professional Competency Program to establish and provide an evidence based implicit bias training program for health care professionals involved in perinatal care.



MD H 123

Requires the Maryland Health Care Commission's report on the impact of telehealth services to include the impact of the use of telehealth on disparities in access to health care services including primary care and behavioral health services.



MD H 1280

Establishes the Maryland Behavioral Health and Public Safety Center of Excellence to act as the statewide information repository for behavioral health treatment and diversion programs related to the criminal justice system. Requires the center to monitor its models, plans, policies, strategies, programs, technical assistance and training for opportunities to reduce the disparities in the criminalization of racial minorities with certain disorders.



MD S 496

Appropriates funds to the Maryland Community Health Resource Commission to provide grants to reduce health disparities.



MD H 28

Requires the Office of Minority Health and Health Disparities to identify and approve implicit bias training programs for health occupations. Also alters the information required on a certain report card to include disparities in morbidity and mortality rates for dementia.



MD H 78

Implements a suite of actions to address health equity in the state. Establishes a state plan for achieving health equity, establishes data sets and guidelines, facilitates coordination across states agencies and directs the commission on health equity to provide direct advice to administrators on issues of racial, ethnic, cultural or socioeconomic health disparities.



MD H 463

Establishes the Pathways to Health Equity Program in the Community Health Resources Commission and provides for grants to health care providers and community organizations in health equity resource communities to reduce disparities.



MD H 831

Establishes the Maryland Food System Resiliency Council to address the food insecurity crisis due to the COVID-19 pandemic, including racial inequities in the food system and diet-related public health disparities.



MD S 565

Requires the Maryland Office of Minority Health and Health Disparities to collaborate with the Maryland Health Care Commission to publish a health care disparities policy report card that includes racial and ethnic composition data on individuals who hold a license or certificate issued by a health occupations board, rather than only physicians.



MA H 4672

Addresses disparities in coronavirus treatment through the creation of a task force to study and address health disparities for underserved and underrepresented populations based on culture, race, ethnicity, language, disability, gender identity, sexual orientation, geographic location and age during the coronavirus pandemic.



MA H 4808

Authorizes $20 million for statewide efforts to address racial health disparities during the coronavirus pandemic.



MA S 9

Requires environmental impact reports to contain an assessment of any existing unfair or inequitable environmental burden and related public health consequences impacting the nearby vulnerable population from any prior or current private, industrial, commercial, state, or municipal operation or project that has damaged the environment.

  2021 MA H 4269 Appropriates funds for several health equity projects, including a health equity institute to be hosted by a state primary care association.



MI H 5396

Appropriates funds for a project that addresses deficiencies in health literacy and its potential impact on health disparities. Funds a residency training program to address local health disparities.

  2021 MI S 82 Appropriates funds to create and implement a pilot program to evaluate the impact of community health care workers on equitable health care delivery and successful mitigation of COVID-19 related health impacts in at-risk urban populations.



MN H 4044

Clarifies that certified electronic health record technology are to be used to reduce health disparities.



MN S 13

Requires a review of the adequacy of the current system of community health clinics with significant disparities in health status and access to services across racial and ethnic groups.



MN H 2128

Directs the health commissioner to allocate at least 75% of grant money awarded from the pregnancy home visiting program to evidence-based home visiting programs that address health equity and up to 25% of the grant money awarded to evidence-informed or promising practice home visiting programs that address health equity and utilize community-driven health strategies.



MN H 33

Requires the health commissioner to consider implications for health disparities when deleting or modifying preferred drug lists. Requires a biennial report on the effectiveness of state maternal and infant health policies and programs addressing health disparities in prenatal and postpartum health outcomes, including identifying barriers to access, promoting racial diversity in the workforce and ensuring culturally responsive training for midwives and doulas. Implements several additional provisions to improve equitable access to health care services, including through telehealth and communication support.



MO H 432

Establishes an Alzheimer’s State Plan Task Force and directs the task force to include ethnic and racial populations that have a higher risk for Alzheimer's disease or are least likely to receive care in clinical, research and service efforts, with the purpose of decreasing health disparities in Alzheimer's disease treatment.




Urges certain actions to address the public health crisis caused by systemic racism and greatly magnified by the COVID-19 pandemic.



NV A 119

Revises the duties of the Maternal Mortality Review Committee to include reviewing demographic data and identifying and reviewing disparities in the incidence of maternal mortality.



NV S 5

Requires the Department of Health and Human Services to establish an electronic tool to analyze certain data concerning access to telehealth, including health disparities data. Requires certain entities to review access to services provided through telehealth and evaluate policies to make such access more equitable.



NV S 109

Requires governmental agencies to request voluntary information on gender identity and sexual orientation to enhance and improve public services for populations experiencing disparities in health and welfare, including disproportionately high rates of poverty, suicide, homelessness, isolation, substance use disorders and violence. These populations include youth and seniors, communities of color and immigrants.



NV S 309

Establishes a Medicaid reinvestment advisory committee and directs use of funds reinvested by Medicaid managed care organizations to address homelessness, disparities in health care and social determinants of health.



NV S 341

Authorizes the Division of Public and Behavioral Health of the Department of Health and Human Services to apply for grants to reduce disparities in health care and behavioral health and certain disparities relating to kidney disease.



NV S 390

Establishes a suicide prevention and behavioral health crisis hotline and identifies the need to prevent overdoses, address disparities in access to health care and prevent substance use among youth, racial and ethnic populations and populations with geographic disparities.



NV S 420

Establishes a public health benefit plan and declares the intent to reduce disparities in access to health care and health outcomes and increase access to health care for historically marginalized communities.

New Hampshire


NH H 1639

Requires the development of a state plan and health assessment to reduce disparities, with a focus on the social determinants of health.



NH H 157

Requires the State Health Improvement Plan to identify disparities in social determinants that may impact health, health outcomes and access to care, and to focus on strategies to reduce inequities in measurable ways.

New Jersey


NJ S 703

Revises provisions of implicit bias training for perinatal care providers to include explicit bias and ongoing training opportunities.



NJ A 4004

Establishes the Coronavirus Disease 2019 Pandemic Task Force on Racial and Health Disparities. Provides that the task force shall conduct a thorough and comprehensive study on the ways in which and the reasons the pandemic has disproportionately affected the state's minority and vulnerable communities, and the short- and long-term consequences of the pandemic on these communities.

New York


NY S 8245

Requires the department of health to conduct a study on the health impacts of coronavirus on minorities in the state.



NY S 7500

Allocates funds for a study of racial disparities, a minority male wellness program and a Latino health outreach initiative.



NY S 879

Requires the department of health to conduct a study of the effects of racial and ethnic disparities on infant mortality and prepare and submit a report to the governor and the legislature.



NY S 1296

Requires the department of health to conduct a review of the effects of racial and ethnic disparities on breastfeeding rates and prepare and submit a report to the governor and the legislature.

  2021 NY A 5679A Declares racism a public health crisis and establishes a working group to promote racial equity throughout the state.

North Carolina


NC S 704

Requires the NC Area Health Education Center to study the ability of the health care workforce and delivery structure to respond to the needs of minority populations and individuals with health disparities during a pandemic.



NC H 1043

Allocates funds to target rural areas and African American communities with outreach, health education and testing to address COVID-19 disparities.



NC S 808

Appropriates $125 million to the department of health and human services to expand public and private initiatives for COVID-19 testing, tracing, and analysis, including for periodic testing for historically underserved or at-risk populations.

  2021 NC S 105 Appropriates funds for a school-based virtual care pilot program to address health disparities in historically underserved areas disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Requires the pilot program to use telehealth services to facilitate student access to health care services and resources that improve health outcomes through the care coordination efforts of local providers.



OH H 12

Creates the Children's Behavioral Health Prevention Network Stakeholder Group to reduce behavioral health disparities among children.



OR H 2010

Directs the Oregon Health Authority to create an implementation plan for a public health insurance plan to further the state goals of health system transformation, including eliminating health disparities in the next 10 years.



OR H 2078

Requires the Pain Management Commission to develop a pain management education program curriculum that takes into account the needs of Oregon tribal communities, communities of color and other groups who have been disproportionately affected by adverse social determinants of health, such as racism, trauma, adverse childhood experiences and other factors that influence how an individual experiences chronic pain.



OR H 2086

Requires the Oregon Health Authority to establish peer and community-driven programs that provide culturally specific and culturally responsive behavioral health services to people of color, tribal communities and people of lived experience. Requires the authority to adopt requirements for coordinated care organizations to provide housing navigation services and address the social determinants of health through care coordination.



OR H 2417

Expands crisis stabilization services, short-term respite facilities, peer respite centers, behavioral health urgent care walk in centers and the crisis hotline center to improve equity in behavioral health treatment and ensure culturally, linguistically and developmentally appropriate responses to individuals experiencing behavioral health crises, in recognition that, historically, crisis response services placed marginalized communities at disproportionate risk of poor outcomes and criminal justice involvement.



OR H 2980

Requires the Oregon Health Authority to provide funding to peer run organizations to operate peer respite centers to provide services to individuals with mental illness or trauma response symptoms who experience acute distress, anxiety or emotional pain that may lead to need for higher level of care. Provides that at least one peer respite center receiving funding must participate in a pilot project designed specifically to provide culturally responsive services to underrepresented communities of color. Peer respite services may include addressing social determinants of health.



OR H 3353

Requires the Oregon Health Authority to seek federal approval of amendment to state Medicaid demonstration project to permit coordinated care organizations to use a portion of global budgets to improve health equity, improve overall health of community or enhance payments to providers who advance health equity or provide services improving overall health of community, and to allow such expenditures to be counted as medical expenses.



OR S 70

Defines the regional health equity coalition and regional health equity coalition model. Requires the Oregon Health Authority to work with regional health equity coalition and address disparities in health outcomes for communities impacted by discrimination.



OR S 778

Establishes the Office of Immigrant and Refugee Advancement to implement and oversee statewide immigrant and refugee integration strategy, including data collection on immigrant and refugee populations for the purposes of determining the needs of the populations and tracking progress in reducing social, economic and health disparities for the populations.



OR S 844

Establishes the Prescription Drug Affordability Board to review prices for nine drugs and at least one insulin product and assess affordability challenges and whether the prescription drug has led to health inequities in communities of color.



PA H 2455

Requires COVID-19 data collecting and reporting by race and ethnicity. 

South Carolina


SC H 3411

Requires partners to develop and deploy a statewide testing plan which must emphasize testing in rural communities and communities with a high prevalence of COVID-19, or high-risk communities, including those with a higher proportion of seniors, African Americans and individuals with chronic conditions.




Recognizes doulas as vital childbirth team members and community health workers and acknowledges their contribution in ending maternal and infant health disparities.



TX S 1

Requires a report on COVID-19 immunization distribution equity and a report on factors related to women’s health and maternal health disparities.



UT S 22

Requires the establishment of an office on American Indian-Alaska Native health issues.



VT H 572

Requires the Maternal Mortality Review Panel to consider health disparities and social determinants of health, including race and ethnicity, in maternal death reviews.



VT H 663

Requires coverage for all methods and forms of contraceptives without cost-sharing and requires school districts and the department of health to make free over-the-counter contraceptives available statewide to vie for reproductive health equity in insurance coverage.



VT H 961

Appropriates funds to Director of Racial Equity for specialized training on equity and inclusion.



VT H 965

Requires the department of health to engage with specific populations most likely to experience adverse outcomes from COVID-19 to enhance its work in addressing health disparities.



VT H 969

Appropriates funds for the department of health to address COVID-19-related health disparities. Requires outreach to Vermonters at high risk of adverse outcomes from the COVID-19 pandemic based upon factors such as race, ethnicity, Native American heritage or tribal affiliation, nationality or immigrant status, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, age, geographic location, or English language proficiency.



VT H 210

Establishes the Office of Health Equity and the Health Equity Advisory Commission. Also specifies that the office will issue grants for the promotion of health equity, collect data to better understand health disparities in the state, and require an additional two hours of continuing medical education on cultural competency for medical providers.



VT H 315

Approves COVID-19 relief funds, including funds to improve data collection related to health equity and funds for collection and analysis of demographic data regarding residents who experience health disparities, including race and ethnicity.



VT H 360

Relates to accelerated community broadband deployment, citing that the COVID-19 public health emergency served as an accelerant to the socioeconomic disparities between the connected and the unconnected, including disparities in accessing telehealth services.



VT H 439

Appropriates funds for activities related to health disparities and health equity, including identifying opportunities to decrease health care disparities highlighted by the COVID-19 pandemic and those attributable to a lack of access to affordable health care services.



VA H 1800

Directs the state Medicaid agency to convene a work group and make recommendations on a Medicaid home visiting benefit to support members' health, access to care and health equity. Also appropriates funds for a strategic COVID-19 communications campaign to target Virginians of various socioeconomic, geographic, racial and ethnic, generational, physical and mental abilities, religious, gender, language differences and other unique similarities and differences.



VA S 1406

Establishes criteria for evaluating new licenses for retail marijuana stores based on density in the community and consideration of potential negative community-level health outcomes or health disparities.



WA H 1783

Creates the Office of Equity to reduce disparities across the state. Creates the Community Advisory Board to support diverse representation by geography and identity.



WA H 2755

Requires health care data reports to be stratified by demography, income, language, health status and geography to identify disparities in care and successful efforts to reduce disparities.



WA H 2870

Establishes the legislative task force on social equity in marijuana and requires that it be staffed by the Health Equity Council of the governor's interagency council on health disparities. 



WA H 2905

Expands investments for baby and child dentistry programs to reduce racial and ethnic disparities in access to care.



WA S 6168

Appropriates funds to identify, analyze and address health equity disparities in access and outcomes for individuals in the Medicaid population and enable the governor's interagency coordinating council on health disparities to establish a task force to develop an office of equity.



WA S 5432

Establishes that publicly funded mental health and substance use disorder services must be designed and integrated to decrease population-level disparities in access to treatment and treatment outcomes.



WA S 6259

Funds programs that address the ongoing suicide and addiction crisis among American Indians and Alaska Natives.



WA H 1114

Encourages utility mitigation to protect public health by removing harmful pollution from the air and prioritize communities with environmental health disparities.



WA H 1152

Supports measures to create comprehensive public health districts. Establishes a foundational health services steering committee and establishes a public health advisory board. Specifies that the advisory board should include residents who have self-identified as having faced significant health inequities or experiences with public health-related programs, as well as community-based organizations or nonprofits that work with populations experiencing health inequities.



WA H 1168

Creates the wildfire response, forest restoration and community resilience account. Specifies that investments and recommendations must use environmental justice or equity focused tools such as the state's environmental health disparities tool to identify highly impacted communities. Requires the account's workforce development to also prioritize historically marginalized, underrepresented, rural and low-income communities.



WA H 1216

Concerns urban and community forestry programs to address environmental health disparities and contribute to improved health through targeted urban forestry programs and activities in communities with greater health disparities.



WA H 1225

Establishes a school-based health center program office within the department of health to award grants and coordinate with other agencies and entities to provide support, training and technical assistance to school-based health centers. Cites increasing health and economic disparities for students of color during COVID-19 and school-based health centers' role in advancing equity by providing health care access and support at schools.



WA H 1272

Concerns health system transparency and community health improvement services in communities impacted by health inequities. Requires certain hospitals to report demographic information about participant race, ethnicity, disability status, gender identity, preferred language and zip code of residence as part of community health improvement services reporting.



WA H 1277

Creates an eviction prevention rental assistance program to provide resources to households most likely to become homeless or suffer severe health consequences, or both, after an eviction. The program promotes equity by prioritizing households, including communities of color, disproportionately impacted by public health emergencies and by homelessness and housing instability.



WA H 1477

Implements the national 988 system to enhance behavioral health crisis response and suicide prevention services. Requires guidelines to appropriately serve high-risk populations with attention to race, ethnicity, gender, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation and geographic location. These guidelines may include training requirements for call response workers, policies for transferring callers to specialized centers, and procedures for referring callers to linguistically and culturally competent care.



WA S 5052

Creates health equity zones to address significant health disparities identified by health outcome data. The state intends to work with community leaders within the health equity zones to share information and coordinate efforts with the goal of addressing the most urgent needs. Health equity zone partners shall develop, expand, and maintain positive relationships with communities of color, Indian communities, communities experiencing poverty, and immigrant communities within the zone to develop effective and sustainable programs to address health inequity.



WA S 5068

Approves extending Medicaid coverage from 60 days to 12 months postpartum, citing significant racial and ethnic disparities in maternal mortality and evidence the proposed policy would decrease inequities by race and ethnicity, immigration status, socioeconomic status and geography.



WA S 5092

Appropriations bill requires development of a climate change and resiliency plan that prioritizes actions in communities that will disproportionately suffer from compounding environmental impacts and will be most impacted by natural hazards due to climate change. The model plan may draw upon the most recent health disparities data from the department of health to identify disproportionately burdened communities. Also commissions a study on equity concerns exacerbated by the COVID-19 in the areas of outdoor recreation and outdoor learning experiences, with a focus on using physical activity and exposure to natural settings as a strategy for improving health disparities and accelerating learning for historically underserved children and youth.



WA S 5126

Creates the air quality and health disparities improvement account in the state treasury and sets principles for allocated funds to reduce health disparities in overburdened communities by improving health outcomes through the reduction or elimination of environmental harms and the promotion of environmental benefits.



WA S 5141

Relates to reducing environmental and health disparities and improving the health of all Washington state residents by implementing the recommendations of the environmental justice task force. Recommendations include use of specific screening tools such as the environmental health disparities map to evaluate needs and impacts of agency actions.



WA S 5228

Requires certain state-funded medical institutions to develop and require training on health equity, including tools for eliminating structural racism in health care systems and building cultural safety, to address disproportionate health outcomes.



WA S 5229

Requires the rule-making authority for each health profession licensed under the state and subject to continuing education requirements to adopt rules requiring licensees to complete health equity continuing education training at least once every four years.



WA S 5345

Establishes an industrial waste coordination program that includes economic, environmental and health disparities metrics to measure the results of industrial or commercial hubs. Requires emerging hubs to consider steps to avoid creating or worsening negative impacts to overburdened communities.



WA S 5399

Creates a universal health care commission to increase access to quality, affordable health care. The commission will produce a report that includes strategies to reduce health disparities such as mitigating structural racism and other determinants of health as set forth by the office of equity.

Note: List may not be comprehensive, but is representative of state laws that exist. NCSL appreciates additions and corrections.

ARCHIVE: Health Disparities State Laws Through 2014


Statute | Session | Law

  • Ala.Code § 16-47-124- Establishes a student loan program for medical students who commit in writing to practice in a medically underserved area in a generalists specialty following graduation.

  • Ala.Code § 16-47-126- Establishes a student loan repayment program for medical students who practice in a medically underserved area following graduation.

  • Ariz. Rev. Stat. §15-1643- Establishes the Arizona health education system in the college of medicine at the University of Arizona. One of the purposes of the system is to develop programs to recruit and retain minority students in health professions.

  • Ariz. Rev. Stat. § 15-1721 et. seq.- Establishes a medical student loan fund for students agreeing to practice in medically underserved areas and/or with medically underserved populations.

  • Ariz. Rev. Stat. § 15-1751- Provides that the University of Arizona school of medicine shall give priority consideration to applicants who demonstrate a willingness to practice in medically underserved areas of the state.

  • Ariz. Rev. Stat. § 36-2172- Creates the primary care provider loan repayment program in the department to pay off portions of education loans taken out by licensed physicians, dentists and mid-level providers who contract with the department of health services to practice in a federally designated health professional shortage area.

  • Ark. Code § 6-5-801 et. seq.- Establishes the "Health Care Student Summer Enrichment Program for Underrepresented Student Populations" within the Department of Higher Education. The program is an intensive six-week program aimed at increasing awareness of medical career opportunities for racial and ethnic minority undergraduate students.

  • Ark. Code § 6-60-212 Allows for public colleges and universities to give special consideration to, and carry out recruitment activities of students interested in nursing or other health related fields from medically underserved areas.

  • Ark. Code § 6-64-406  The Board of Trustees of the University of Arkansas shall give additional consideration to applicants to the College of Medicine from rural medically underserved areas in an effort to address health disparities.

  • Ark. Code § 17-80-301 et. seq. Requires appointing authorities for state health-related agencies, boards, and commissions to consider appointment recommendations submitted by minority health-related professional associations in order to ensure that minority health issues and cultural competency are represented in health policy decisions.

  • Ark. Code § 19-12-114 Instructs the Arkansas Minority Health Commission to establish and administer the Arkansas Minority Health Initiative for screening, monitoring, and treating hypertension, strokes, and other disorders disproportionately critical to minority groups in Arkansas.

  • Ark. Code § 20-2-101 et. seq. Established the Arkansas Minority Health Commission to address health disparities in the state.

  • Ark. Code § 20-15-1801 et. seq. Established the Arkansas HIV-AIDS Minority Task Force to study ways to strengthen HIV prevention programs, address the needs of those living with HIV and AIDS, and develop specific strategies for reducing the risk of HIV and AIDS in the state's minority communities.

  • Cal. Business & Professional Code § 852- Establishes the Task Force on Culturally and Linguistically Competent Physicians and Dentists to develop continuing education programs that include foreign language training for physicians and dentists. The task force will also assess the need for voluntary cultural and linguistic competency certification standards.

  • Cal. Government Code § 8310.5 Requires any state agency, board, or commission which directly or by contract collects demographic data as to the ancestry or ethnic origin of Californians to use separate collection categories and tabulations for each major Asian and Pacific Islander group as set forth in this section.

  • Cal. Government Code § 8310.7 Requires the Departments of Industrial Relations and Fair Employment and Housing to collect and publish the demographic data established in § 8310.5 on the web site of the agency on or before July 1, 2012, and annually thereafter.

  • Cal. Health & Safety Code § 124174.6- The department will establish a grant program within the Public School Health Center Support Program to provide technical assistance, and funding for the expansion, renovation, and retrofitting of existing school health centers, and the development of new school health centers. The department shall give preference for funding to the following schools: schools in medically underserved areas, schools with a high percentage of low-income and uninsured children and youth, and schools with large numbers of limited English proficient (LEP) children and youth.

  • Cal. Insurance Code § 10133.8- Requires insurance providers to provide appropriate access to translated materials and language assistance. The regulations include an assessment of the needs of the insured group and surveying the language preferences and needs of the insured. The insurer is required to translate vital documents; the number of languages required depend on the size of the population. The insurer is required to inform limited-English-proficient insured of the availability of interpreter services.

  • Cal. Health & Safety Code § 128330 et. seq.- The Office of Statewide Health and Planning shall establish the Health Professions Education Foundation. The members may include representatives of minority groups that are underrepresented in the health professions and health professionals. One of the goals is to offer scholarship or loans to African-American, Native American, Hispanic-American students and other students from underrepresented groups accepted to or enrolled in schools of medicine, dentistry, nursing, or other health professions.

  • Cal. Health & Safety Code § 124174 et. seq.- Establishes rules regarding and some funding for public school health centers. This law recognizes the role of student health centers in reducing health disparities.

  • Cal. Health & Safety Code § 1568.15 et. seq.- Alters the composition of the Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders Advisory Committee and requires a review of state policies related to the disease. It recognizes the need to serve non-English speakers and ethnically diverse populations.Cal. ACR 114 (Risk Factors and Commission) Establishes a Task Force on Diabetes and Obesity to study factors contributing to the high rates of diabetes and obesity in Latinos, African-Americans, Asian Pacific Islanders, and Native Americans.

  • Cal. Code § 1300.67.04- Requires health insurance plans to provide language assistance to enrollees. The law requires service plans to provide translations for vital documents. The number of languages documents must be translated into depends on the enrollment size of the plan and linguistic makeup of the enrollees.

  • Cal. Bus. & Prof. Code § 2190.1-  Requires cultural competency training to be a part of the continuing education requirements for licensure of physicians and surgeons.

  • Cal. Health & Saf. Code § 150 et. seq.- Establishes the Office of Multicultural Health within the State Department of Public Health. The office will work towards closing health status gaps among racial and ethnic minorities. Responsibilities of the office include developing a strategic minority health plan, providing cultural and linguistic competency training to health professionals, and providing assistance to help other public and private entities locate funding sources for multicultural health initiatives.

  • Cal. Health & Safety Code § 106000 et. seq.-  Established the Urban Community Health Institute: Centers to Eliminate Health Disparities at the Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science to address the problem of disparate health care in the Los Angeles County Service Planning Area (SPA 6) and other multicultural communities

  • Cal. Health & Safety Code § 127875 et. seq.- Creates the Health Professions Career Opportunity Program designed to increase the number of ethnic minorities in health professional training and increase the number of minority health professionals practicing in medically underserved areas.

  • Col. Rev. Stat. § 25-4-2203- Establishes the Health Disparities Grant Program within the Department of Public Health and Environment to provide financial support for statewide initiatives that address prevention, early detection, and treatment of cancer and cardiovascular/pulmonary diseases in underrepresented populations.
  • Col. Rev. Stat. § 25-4-2204 et. seq.- Creates the Office of Health Equity within the Department of Public Health and Environment to serve in a coordinating, educating, and capacity-building role for state and local public health programs and community-based organizations. Outlines powers and duties, including promoting health equity in Colorado by implementing strategies to address the varying causes of health disparities, including economic, physical and social environment; providing public education on health equity, health disparities and the social determinants of health. 
  • Col. Rev. Stat. § 25-4-2206- Establishes the Health Equity Commission to advise the Department on Public Health and Environment on issues relating to health equity, specifically focusing on alignment, education and capacity building for state and local health programs and community-based organizations. The commission shall be dedicated to promoting health equity and eliminating health disparities. 
  • Conn. Gen. Stat. § 10a-109b- Requires the University of Connecticut Health Center to include a health disparities institute that to enhance research and the delivery of care to minority and medically underserved populations of the state. The law also requires an institute for clinical and translational science to be located on the campus of The University of Connecticut Health Center.

  • Conn. Gen. Stat. § 2-122- Establishes the Asian Pacific American Affairs Commission. This commission, among other topics, should address any issues dealing with access to health care or mental health and addiction services.

  • Conn. Gen. Stat. § 4-124dd- Establishes the Connecticut Allied Health Workforce Policy Board to monitor and improve the capacity of the state’s current allied health workforce. Among other duties, the board is required to develop recommendations for promoting diversity in the allied health workforce, including, but not limited to, racial, ethnic, and gender diversity.

  • Conn. Gen. Stat. § 17b-306- The Commissioner of Social Services, in consultation with the Commissioner of Public Health, shall develop a plan for a system of preventive health services for children under the HUSKY Plan, Parts A and B. The goal of the system shall be to improve health outcomes for all children enrolled in the HUSKY Plan and to reduce racial and ethnic disparities among children.

  • Conn. Gen. Stat. § 20-10b- Requires that medical professionals applying for licensure renewal after October 1, 2010 must have at least one contact hour of continuing medical education or training in cultural competency.

  • Conn. Gen. Stat. § 38a-1051- Establishes a Commission on Health Equity with the mission of eliminating disparities in health status based on race, ethnicity, gender and linguistic ability, and improving the quality of health for all of the state's residents.

  • Del. Code Ann. tit. 16 § 9908- The Board of Directors of the Delaware Institute of Medical Education and Research shall serve as an advisory board to the Health Care Commission. One of the Board’s multiple responsibilities is to develop a recruitment program to encourage medical school applications from minorities and residents of rural counties and underserved areas of Delaware. 

  • Del. Code Ann. tit. 16 § 196- Establishes the Delaware Healthy Mother and Infant Consortium. One of the tasks identified for the Consortium is to Coordinate efforts to address health disparities related to the health of women of childbearing age and infants.

  • Fla. Stat. § 20.43- establishes the Office of Minority Health within the Department of Health.

  • Fla. Stat. § 381.0403- Establishes a program to provide financial support for primary care specialty interns and residents in order to promote practice in medically underserved areas of the state and encourage racial and ethnic diversity of the state’s physician workforce.

  • Fla. Stat. § 381.4018- The Department of Health shall serve as a coordinating and strategic planning body to actively assess the state’s current and future physician workforce needs. The department must also develop strategies that would provide monetary incentives for physicians to relocate to underserved areas of the state.

  • Fla. Stat. § 381.7351 et. seq.- Creates the Reducing Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities: Closing the Gap Act grant program to stimulate the development of community-based and neighborhood-based projects which will improve the health outcomes of racial and ethnic populations.

  • Fla. Stat. § 381.91- Establishes the Jessie Trice Cancer Prevention Program to Reduce the rates of illness and death from lung cancer and other cancers and improve the quality of life among low-income African-American and Hispanic populations through increased access to early, effective screening and diagnosis, education, and treatment programs.

  • F.S.A. § 381.911 Authorizes the University of Florida Prostate Disease Center, in collaboration with other organizations and institutions, to establish a prostate cancer council to replace the existing advisory committee. The council will be tasked with the objective of, but not limited to minimizing prostate cancer disparities through outreach and education.

  • Fla. Stat. § 383.2162- Creates the Black Infant Health Practice Initiative. The initiative shall include reviews of infant mortality in select counties in this state in order to identify factors in the health and social services systems contributing to higher mortality rates among African-American infants.
  • Fla. Stat. § 409.147- Provides for the designation of "children's zones" where children in disadvantaged areas can be provided with a more positive educational and social environment. Among the goals of these zones is to eliminate health disparities between racial and cultural groups.

  • Fla. Stat. § 641.217- Requires any entity contracting with the Agency for Health Care Administration to provide health care services to Medicaid recipients or state employees on a prepaid or fixed-sum basis must submit to the Agency for Health Care Administration the entity's plan for recruitment and retention of health care practitioners who are minorities.

  • Fla. Stat. § 765.5155- Recognizes of a need to reach out to minority populations to increase organ donor registrations.

  • Fla. Stat. § 1009.68- Establishes the Florida Minority Medical Education program to provide scholarships to minority students to encourage the pursuit of medical education at state schools for the purpose of addressing the primary health care needs of underserved groups.

  • Hawaii Rev. Stat. § 321-1.5 Establishes within the Department of Health a Primary Health Care Incentive Program that will investigate and analyze the extent, location, and characteristics of medically underserved areas, and the numbers, location, and characteristics of medically underserved persons in Hawaii, and develop a strategy for meeting the health needs of those populations based upon the findings.

  • Hawaii Rev. Stat. § 371-34 Requires state-funded entities to provide free language services.

  • Hawaii Rev. Stat. § 321-1.5 Establishes a primary health care incentive program within the department of health to study the adequacy, accessibility, and availability of primary health care with regard to medically underserved persons in the State of Hawaii and to develop a strategy for meeting the health needs of those  populations.

  • HR 143, SCR 143, and SR 79 2012- Requests that the Governor direct all state departments to comply with the United States Office of Management and Budget’s Statistical Policy Directive No. 15, “Race and Ethnic Standards for Federal Statistics and Administrative Reporting,” which separates the “Asian and Pacific Islander” category into two categories entitled “Asians” and “Native Hawaiians and Other Pacific Islanders.”

  • Ill. Rev. Stat. Ch. 20 § 5/5-565- Requires the State Board of Health to deliver to the Governor, for presentation to the General Assembly, a State Health Improvement Plan which includes priorities and strategies for reducing and eliminating health disparities in areas such as racial and ethnic, gender, age, socio-economic, and geographic disparities, by January 1, 2016 and every 5 years thereafter. 

  • Ill. Ann. Stat. Ch. 110 § 925/2- The Illinois Department of Public Health will establish a program to encourage minority students to enroll in and complete dental school in the state.

  • Ill. Ann. Stat. Ch. 110 § 978/5-) The Illinois Department of Public Health will establish a program providing grants to podiatric medicine residency programs, scholarships to podiatry students, and a loan repayment program for podiatrists who will agree to practice in underserved areas of the state. Minority students shall be given preference for scholarships.

  • Ill. Rev. Stat. Ch. 20 §2310/2310-215- Establishes a Center for Minority Health Services to advise the Department of Public Health on matters pertaining to the health needs of minority populations. 

  • Ill. Rev. Stat. Ch. 20 § 4075/20- Creates the Commission on Children and Youth Act. Among the factors stated for the Commission to consider in creating a five year plan are disparities in access and outcomes based on racial, ethnic, geographic, gender, sexual orientation, disability, and other variables.
  • Ill. Rev. Stat. Ch. 20 § 2310/2310-216- Establishes the Culturally Competent Healthcare Demonstration Program aimed at improving the quality of health care for ethnic and racial minorities.

  • Ill. Rev. Stat. Ch. 20 § 2310/2310-76- Amends the Department of Public Health power and duties, creating the Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion task force. Particular emphasis is placed on addressing health disparities and targeting high-risk populations, especially in communities where racial, ethnic and socioeconomic factors contribute to higher incidence of chronic disease.

  • Ill. Rev. Stat. Ch. 20 § 2310/2310-210- The Advisory Panel on Minority Health to assist the Department of Public Health in matters relating to minority health.

  • Ind. Code § 16-46-11-1 et. seq.-  Directs the state department of health to develop and implement a state structure more conducive to addressing the health disparities of the minority populations in Indiana including: monitoring minority health progress; funding minority health programs, research, and other initiatives; staffing a minority health hotline; developing and implementing an awareness program that will increase the knowledge of health and social service providers to the special needs of minorities; and developing and implementing culturally and linguistically appropriate health promotion and disease prevention programs.

  • Ind. Code § 16-46-6-1 et. seq.- Establishes the Interagency State Council on Black and Minority Health within the state Department of Health.

  • Ind. Code § 16-19-14-1 et. seq.- Establishes the Office of Minority Health within the state Department of Health. This chapter expires July 1, 2014.

  • Ind. Code § 4-12-5-4- Subject to appropriation, monies from the Indiana Health Care Trust Fund may be distributed to one or more programs, including: health care services and preventive measures that address the special health care needs of minorities; Addressing minority health disparities; and Expanding community based minority health infrastructure—among others.

  • Ind. Code §  12-15-44.2-14- Any insurer or a health maintenance organization that contracts with the state to provide health insurance coverage under the Indiana Check-Up Plan must incorporate cultural competency standards.  

  • Iowa Code Ann. § 135.12- Establishes the Office of Minority and Multicultural Health within the Department of Public Health.

  • Iowa Code Ann. § 135.158- Establishes the purposes of a “medical home”. Included in the stated purposes is to reduce disparities in health care access, delivery, and health care outcomes.

  • Kan. Stat. Ann. § 74-3266- Creates a scholarship program for Kansas undergraduate students enrolled in or admitted to an accredited school of osteopathic medicine in a course of instruction leading to the degree of doctor of osteopathy; and who upon graduation agree to practice in a rural area or a medically underserved area.

  • Kan. Stat. Ann. § 74-32,131 et. seq.- Establishes the Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner Service Scholarship Program for students who agree upon completion of an advanced registered nurse practitioner program, to practice in a rural area or medically underserved area.

  • Ky. Rev. Stat. § 205.201 Outlines the duties of the Cabinet for Health and Family Services, which includes, but is not limited to: Preparing an annual report for the Legislative Research Commission which contains an overview of the health status of minority elderly Kentuckians and identifies specific diseases and health conditions for which the minority elderly are at greater risk than the general population.

  • Ky. Rev. Stat. § 216.2920 et. seq.- Provides guidelines for health data collection. Included are requirements for evaluating the status of women's health including data on ethnicity and reporting on the special health needs of the minority population in odd-numbered years, identifying the diseases that affect this population disproportionately and provide recommendations to address this disparity.

  • La. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 17:1817- The Board of Supervisors of Southern University and Agricultural and Mechanical College may create and operate an office or offices of minority health. Funding for any such office shall be subject to legislative appropriation.

  • La. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 40:2195.6- Requires the Department of Health and Hospitals to establish primary health care clinics in each of the rural parishes in the state if and when one hundred percent federal funding becomes available for this purpose. The purpose is to expand primary health care and medical services to rural areas and develop greater access to health care for the underprivileged, working poor, and minorities.

  • La. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 46:978.1 et. seq.- The Department of Health and Hospitals shall develop and implement a medical home system of care for Medicaid recipients and the low-income uninsured citizens of the state with the purpose of providing a coordinated continuum of care, the cost of the current health care delivery system shall be reduced, health outcomes shall improve, and the disparities in access to health care among the state's populations shall be reduced.

  • La. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 17:2048.51- Establishes the Louisiana Health Works Commission within the Department of Education. The commission is to study and make recommendations on programs to recruit and retain health care professionals in the Louisiana workforce; models for predicting the supply and demand for health care workers in the state; and incentives for health care workers to practice in Louisiana's medically underserved areas.

  • La. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 40:1300.132- Requires the Department of Health and Hospitals to adopt a series of regulations and payment methodologies intended to fully reimburse federally qualified health centers (FQHC) so that FQHC’s may retain primary health professionals and continue providing health care services in medically underserved areas.

  • La. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 46:2731- Establishes the "Health Trust Fund" within the state treasury. Among the approved purposes for monies from the fund are: health workforce development and retention, disease specific treatment programs, and expanding access to health care services in medically underserved areas.

  • House Resolution 146, 2012- Creates a study committee to examine and make recommendations with respect to the structure of the African American family as it relates to education outcomes, socioeconomic factors, and health disparities. Requires the study committee to report to the House Committee on Health and Welfare by March 1, 2013. 

  • Me. Rev. Stat. Ann. tit. 22 § 412- The Statewide Coordinating Council for Public Health must have representation from populations in the State facing health disparities.

  • Me. Rev. Stat. Ann. tit. 22 § 413- The Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention, the Statewide Coordinating Council for Public Health, the district coordinating councils for public health and Healthy Maine Partnerships shall undertake a universal wellness initiative to ensure that all people of the State have access to resources and evidence-based interventions in order to know, understand and address health risks and to improve health and prevent disease. A particular focus must be on the uninsured and others facing health disparities.

  • Me. Rev. Stat. Ann. tit. 22 § 2097- Members of the Maine Dental Health Council must include, in addition to health professionals, 5 interested citizens representing a balance of diverse socioeconomic groups and geographic locations, who may not be employed in the dental health or medical care professions.

  • Md. Health-General Code Ann. § 1-214- Requires health occupations boards to collect specified racial and ethnic information. Requires that, to the extent practicable, members of health occupations boards reasonably reflect the geographic, racial, ethnic, and cultural and gender diversity of the state.

  • Md. Health-General Code Ann. § 1-216- The health occupations boards authorized to issue a license or certificate under this article shall develop collaboratively a training process and materials for new board members that include training in cultural competency.

  • Md. Health-General Code Ann. § 13-1115- Establishes a Baltimore City Community Health Coalition that includes representatives of community-based groups, including minority and medically underserved populations. The purpose of the Coalition is to identify all existing cancer prevention, education, screening, and treatment programs, evaluate those programs, and develop a comprehensive plan for cancer prevention, education, screening, and treatment in Baltimore city.

  • Md. Health-General Code Ann. § 15-143- Requires the Governor to include in the budget bill for fiscal year 2008 at least $3,000,000 in General Fund State support for an immigrant health initiative to provide health care services for all legal immigrant children under the age of 18 years and pregnant women who meet program eligibility standards and arrived in the United States on or after August 22, 1996.
  • Md. Health-General Code Ann. § 18-1001 et. seq.- Requires the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene coordinate with the Maryland Office of Minority Health and Health Disparities to develop a plan to address Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C viruses that disproportionately affect minority populations in the state. Requires the Maryland Health Care Commission to examine research findings surrounding health disparities and the most effective treatment for African Americans with Hepatitis C.

  • Md. Health-General Code Ann. § 19-1A-01- Requires the Health Care Commission to establish a Patient Centered Medical Home Program. The commission is charged with ensuring that a participating patient centered medical home provides ongoing culturally and linguistically appropriate care for the purpose of reducing health disparities.

  • Md. Health-General Code Ann. § 19-134- Requires the Maryland Commission on Health Care to compile data on Minority Health and Health Disparities and publish its findings in the "Health Care Disparities Policy Report Card" as required under § 20-1004(22).

  • Md. Health-General Code Ann. § 19-2101 et. seq.- Establishes the Maryland Community Health Commission to increase access to health care through community health resources. The commission membership must have geographic balance and promote racial and gender diversity.

  • Md. Health-General Code Ann. § 20-901 et. seq.- Encourages the inclusion of courses or seminars that address the identification and elimination of health care services disparities of minority populations as part of: curriculum courses or seminars offered or required by institutions of higher education; continuing education requirements for health care providers; and continuing education programs offered by hospitals for hospital staff and health care practitioners.

  • Md. Health-General Code Ann. § 20-1001 et. seq.- Establishes the Office of Minority Health and Health Disparities. Outlines the duties and responsibilities of the office. Requires the office to work collaboratively with universities, public health and social work programs, and allied health to create courses focusing on cultural competency, sensitivity and health literacy.  

  • Md. Health-General Code Ann. § 20-1301 et. seq.- Establishes the Cultural and Linguistic Health Care Professional Competency Program with the purpose of incorporating cultural and linguistic abilities into therapeutic and medical evaluation and treatment.

  •  Md. Health-General Code Ann § 20-1401 et. seq.- Creates the Health Improvement and Disparities Reduction Act of 2012.  Requires the secretary of mental health and hygiene to designate certain areas as Health Enterprise Zones, and to adopt an evaluation and reporting system for racial and ethnic health disparities.   

  • Md. Insurance Code Ann. § 27-914- Prohibits the use of specified racial or ethnic information to deny or otherwise affect a health insurance policy.


  • Mass. Gen. Laws Ann. ch. 6A § 16O- Establishes a health disparities council within, but not subject to the control of, the executive office of health and human services. The purpose of the council is to make recommendations to reduce and eliminate racial and ethnic disparities in access to quality health care and in health outcomes within the commonwealth.

  • Mass. Gen. Laws Ann. ch. 6A § 16K- Establishes a health care quality and cost council within, but not subject to control of, the executive office of health and human services. The purpose of the council is to promote public transparency of the quality and cost of health care in the commonwealth, and to seek to improve health care quality, reduce racial and ethnic health disparities and contain health care costs.

  • Mass. Gen. Laws Ann. ch. 23H § 9- Establishes a health professions worker training grant program for the purpose of responding to the need for workers in various health care professions.

  • Mass. Gen. Laws Ann. ch. 40J § 6D- Establishes an institute for health care innovation, technology and competitiveness, to be known as the Massachusetts e-Health Institute. Included in the outlined duties, the institute director shall prepare and annually update a statewide electronic health records plan and an annual update thereto. Each plan is to be focused on community-based implementation, particularly for providers such as community health centers that serve underserved populations, including, but not limited to, racial, ethnic and linguistic minorities, uninsured persons, and areas with a high proportion of public payer care.

  • Mass. Gen. Laws Ann. ch. 111 § 4O-- Subject to appropriation, the commissioner shall appoint a dental director who shall oversee the department of public health dental program to increase access to oral health services, oral health prevention activities and other initiatives to address oral health disparities.

  • Mass. Gen. Laws Ann. ch. 111 § 25L- Establishes a health care workforce center within the Department of Public Health to improve access to health care services and to coordinate the department's health care workforce activities with other state agencies and public and private entities involved in health care workforce training, recruitment and retention. 


  • Mich. Comp. Laws § 333.2707- Establishes a grant program for minority students enrolled in medical schools, nursing programs, or physician's assistant programs.

  • Mich. Comp. Laws § 333.2721- Establishes the minority health profession grant fund as a separate fund within the state treasury, to be administered by the Department of Public Health.

  • Mich. Comp. Laws § 333.2227- Sets forth the Powers and duties relating to racial and ethnic health disparities for the Department of Public Health.


  • Minn. Stat. § 62J.495- By January 1, 2015, all hospitals and health care providers must have in place an interoperable electronic health records system within their hospital system or clinical practice setting. Among the stated goals is to improve the quality and coordination of health care and continuity of patient care among health care providers, to reduce medical errors, to improve population health, to reduce health disparities, and to reduce chronic disease.

  • Minn. Stat. § 62J.496- Establishes an account to finance the purchase of certified electronic health records or qualified electronic health records, enhance the utilization of electronic health record technology, train personnel in the use of electronic health record technology; and improve the secure electronic exchange of health information. Among the eligible borrowers are entities that serve uninsured, underinsured, and medically underserved individuals, regardless of whether such area is urban or rural.

  • Minn. Stat. § 137.38- The Board of Regents of the University of Minnesota, through the University of Minnesota Medical School, is requested to implement initiatives designed to encourage newly graduated primary care physicians to establish practices in areas of rural and urban Minnesota that are medically underserved.

  • Minn. Stat. § 137.42- It is a goal of the state to reduce tobacco use among youth and to promote statewide and local tobacco use prevention activities to achieve this goal. Subdivision 6c states that the Commissioner of Health must give funding priority to programs that addresses disparities among populations of color related to tobacco use and other high-risk health-related behaviors. Subdivision 8a prioritizes smoking cessation activities in low-income, indigenous, and minority communities.

  • Minn. Stat. § 144.1501- Establishes a health professional education loan forgiveness program account. Eligible recipients include medical residents agreeing to practice in designated rural areas or underserved urban communities.

  • Minn. Stat. § 145.928- Sets forth the goal of eliminating health disparities as part of the state’s Community health Services and establishes a program to close the gap in the health status of American Indians and populations of color as compared with whites in the following priority areas: infant mortality, breast and cervical cancer screening, HIV/AIDS and sexually transmitted infections, adult and child immunizations, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and accidental injuries and violence.

  • Minn. Stat. § 145.986- The commissioner of health shall award competitive grants to community health boards established pursuant to section 145A.09 and tribal governments to convene, coordinate, and implement evidence-based strategies targeted at reducing the percentage of Minnesotans who are obese or overweight and to reduce the use of tobacco.

  • Minn. Stat. § 145A.14- The commissioner may make special grants to furnish health services for migrant agricultural workers and their families in areas of the state where significant numbers of migrant workers are located; and to establish, operate, or subsidize clinic facilities and services to furnish health services for American Indians who reside off reservations. Also provides $1,500,000 per year is available to tribal governments for maternal and child health activities, activities to reduce health disparities, and emergency preparedness.

  • Minn. Stat. § 256.962- Establishes a statewide campaign to raise public awareness on the availability of health coverage through medical assistance, general assistance medical care, and MinnesotaCare and to educate the public on the importance of obtaining and maintaining health care coverage. As part of the program, the Commissioner of Human Services is directed to award grants to organizations for outreach activities, including, but not limited to targeting geographic areas with high rates of eligible but unenrolled children, including children who reside in rural areas; or racial and ethnic minorities and health disparity populations. 


  • Miss. Code Ann.  § 37-144-1 et. seq. - Establishes the Mississippi Rural Physicians Scholarship Program designed to recruit, identify and enroll undergraduate students who demonstrate necessary interest, commitment, aptitude and academic achievement to pursue careers as family physicians or other generalist physicians in rural or medically underserved areas of Mississippi.  

  • Miss. Code Ann. § 41-3-61- The State Board of Health is required to adopt guidelines applicable to physician practices, nurse practitioner practices and physician assistant practices in Mississippi that incorporate the principles of the patient-centered medical home based upon a number of legislative findings, including that: multiple studies have demonstrated that when minorities have a medical home, racial and ethnic disparities in terms of medical access disappear and the costs of health care decrease.

  • Miss. Code Ann.  § 41-99-1 et. seq.- Establishes the Mississippi Qualified Health Center Grant Program for the purpose of making service grants to Mississippi qualified health centers for their use in providing care to uninsured or medically indigent patients in Mississippi. "Mississippi qualified health center" means a public or nonprofit entity that provides comprehensive primary care services that: (iii) Serves a designated medically underserved area or population, as provided in Section 330 of the Public Health Service Act.

  • Miss. Code Ann. § 41-119-1 et. seq.- Establishes the Mississippi Health Information Network. The powers and duties include the promotion of the use of certified electronic health records technology in a manner that improves quality, safety, and efficiency of health care delivery, reduces health care disparities, engages patients and families, improves health care coordination, improves population and public health, and ensures adequate privacy and security protections for personal health information. This act is repealed effective July 1, 2014. 


  • Mo. Rev. Stat. § 191.980- Establishes the Missouri Area Health Education Centers program to improve the supply, distribution, availability, and quality of health care personnel in Missouri communities and promote access to primary care for medically underserved communities and populations.

  • Mo. Rev. Stat. § 192.040- The department of health and senior services shall compile and issue reports and summaries of accomplishments and projects within the department as may be of benefit and advantage to the public, including information concerning vital and mortuary statistics, respecting diseases, and instructing in the subject of hygiene. Such reports shall include information and statistics on Black health and the mortality of minority groups.

  • Mo. Rev. Stat. § 192.083 et. seq.- Establishes an Office of Minority Health within the department of health and senior services and outlines powers and duties.

  • Mo. Rev. Stat. § 192.350 et. seq.- Establishes the Missouri State Advisory Council on Pain and Symptom Management within the department of health and senior services. Among the duties of the council is to examine the needs of adults, children, the terminally ill, racial and ethnic minorities, and medically underserved populations that have acute and chronic pain and Make recommendations on acute and chronic pain management treatment practices.

  • Mo. Rev. Stat. § 208.533 et. seq.- Establishes a twenty-member Commission on the Special Health, Psychological and Social Needs of Minority Older Individuals under the division of aging with the purpose of identifying the special needs of the minority older population in Missouri as compared to the older population at-large and make recommendations for meeting those needs.  


  • Mont. Code Ann. § 20-26-1501 et. seq.- Establishes a Health Care Provider Incentive Program to pay the educational debts of physicians practicing in rural areas or medically underserved areas or for underserved populations. 


  • Neb. Rev. Stat. § 71-701- Establishes the Women's Health Initiative of Nebraska within the Department of Health and Human Services. Among the powers and duties of the Initiative is to Serve as a clearinghouse for information regarding women's health issues, including but not limited to rural and ethnic disparities in health outcomes.

  • Neb. Rev. St. § 71-1628.07- The Department of Health and Human Services shall establish a satellite office of minority health in each congressional district to coordinate and administer state policy relating to minority health.

  • Neb. Rev. Stat. § 71-7605 et seq. -Creates the Excellence in Health Care Trust Fund which will be used for awarding grants for public health services which target federally recognized Native American tribes in Nebraska and organizations that focus on the health of minority groups. It also requires that the Department of Health and Human Services contract with the health clinics of Nebraska's federally recognized Native American tribes, Indian health organizations, or other public health organizations that have a substantial Native American clientele to provide educational and public health services targeted to Native American populations.

  • Neb. Rev. St. § 85-1,130- Instructed the University of Nebraska Medical Center to develop a plan to increase the number of graduates of the center who specialize in primary care fields, who take residencies in primary care fields, and who establish practices in rural areas and other medically underserved areas of the state.


  • Nev. Rev. Stat. § 232.467 et. seq.- Establishes an Office of Minority Health within the Department of Health and Human Services and outlines powers and duties.

  • Nev. Rev. Stat. § 396.907- Establishes the Area Health Education Center Program within the University of Nevada School of Medicine to support education and training programs for students studying to become practitioners, or residents or practitioners who will provide or are providing health care services in medically underserved areas in this state, including urban and rural areas.

  • Nev. Rev. Stat. § 439.362- Requires that the District Board of Health in counties whose population is 400,000 or more contain two representatives who are physicians licensed to practice medicine in this State, one of whom is selected on the basis of his or her education, training, experience or demonstrated abilities in the provision of health care services to members of minority groups and other medically underserved populations.

  • Nev. Rev. Stat. § 439.491 et. seq.- Establishes the Advisory Committee for the Prevention and Treatment of Stroke and Heart Disease and outlines the powers and duties of the committee. The committee is to make recommendations to the Health Division for the establishment of a comprehensive plan for the prevention of stroke, heart disease and other vascular disease in this State which includes, but is not limited to: recommendations to eliminate disparities in vascular health among populations that are disproportionally affected by stroke, heart disease and other vascular disease.

New Jersey

  • N.J. Rev. Stat. § 18A:71C-32 et. seq.- Establishes a Primary Care Practitioner Loan Redemption Program within the Higher Education Student Assistance Authority. The program shall provide for the redemption of a portion of the eligible qualifying loan expenses of program participants for each year of service at an approved site located within a state designated underserved area or a health professional shortage area.

  • N.J. Rev. Stat. § 26:2-160 et. seq.- Establishes the New Jersey Office on Minority and Multicultural Health within the State Department of Health and outlines powers and duties.

  • N.J. Rev. Stat. § 26:2-182- Establishes the Task Force on Cancer Prevention, Early Detection and Treatment in New Jersey within the Department of Health and Senior Services and outlines powers and duties of the task force. The duties of the task force include, but are not limited to: closing the gap in cancer mortality rates between the total population and minorities.

  • N.J. Rev. Stat. § 26:2W-1- Directs the Commissioner of Health and Senior Services to establish a Cancer Awareness, Education and Research Program to provide the following: support for cancer medical research; physician education and awareness; and patient education and screening services, particularly for members of minority groups.

  • N.J. Rev. Stat. § 45:9-7.2 et. seq.- Requires that the State Board of Medical Examiners include instruction in cultural competency designed to address the problem of race and gender-based disparities in medical treatment decisions as a condition of receiving a diploma from a college of medicine in this State.

New Mexico

  • N.M. Stat. Ann. § 9-7-4.1- Requires the Department of Health, in conjunction with the New Mexico Health Policy Commission and other state agencies, to develop a comprehensive strategic plan for health that emphasizes prevention, personal responsibility, access and quality. The plan should include, but not be limited to addressing the diseases, injuries and risk factors for physical, behavioral and oral health that are the greatest cause of illness, injury or death in the state, with special attention to and recognition of the disparities that currently exist for different population groups.

  • N.M. Stat. Ann. § 9-7-11.1 Requires the Department of Health and the New Mexico Health Policy Commission to consult with governments of Indian nations, tribes and pueblos in order to develop a strategic plan for health.  The strategic plan is to be published by July 1, 2004 and July 1 of subsequent even-numbered years and will a focus on prevention, personal responsibility, access, and quality. 

  • N.M. Stat. Ann. § 11-18-1 et.seq.-The “State-Tribal Collaboration Act" requires state agencies to adopt practices to promote cultural competency in providing services to American Indians or Alaska Natives and identifies reducing health disparities as a goal.

  • N.M. Stat. Ann. § 21-7-26 et. seq.- Requires the board of regents of the university of New Mexico to establish a primary care physician assistant training program designed to develop and expand physician residencies in family practice, internal medicine, obstetrics, gynecology and pediatrics in rural or other medically underserved areas.

  • N.M. Stat. Ann. § 24-1D-1 et. seq.- Establishes the New Mexico health service corps in the department of health to recruit and place health professionals in rural and other medically underserved areas.

  • N.M. Stat. Ann. § 24-1G-1 et. seq.- Creates the New Mexico Telehealth and Health Information Technology Commission to encourage a single, coordinated statewide effort to create a telehealth and health information technology system. The purpose of the commission includes, but is not limited to addressing the problems of provider distribution in medically underserved areas of the state.  

  • N.M. Stat. Ann. § 24-25-1 et. seq.- Authorizes health care providers in the State of New Mexico to deliver health care services via telehealth technologies in order to provide efficient and effective access to quality health services.

  • Senate Memorial 33 - 2012 - Encourages state agencies to adopt a policy to address institutional racism, as it results in racial disparities with respect to health, education, criminal justice, employment and housing, by January 1, 2013.  

New York

  • N.Y. Public Health Law § 240 et. seq. Establishes an office of minority health within the state department of health and outlines the powers and duties of the office.

  • N.Y. Public Health Law § 900 et. seq.- The primary care education and training act. Authorizes the commissioner of health, in collaboration with the commissioner of education and the president of the higher education services corporation to establish programs for loan repayment, scholarships, and grants to encourage and to increase the increase the number of medical students choosing primary care, and to encourage those students to practice in medically underserved areas. There is also a provision to to encourage minority participation in medicine. 

North Carolina

  • N.C. Gen. Stat.§ 130A‑16- All medical care providers required to report to the Division of Public Health shall collect and document patient self‑reported race and ethnicity data and shall include such data in their reports to the Division.

  • N.C. Gen. Stat. § 130A-33.43 et. seq.- Establishes the Minority Health Advisory Council in the Department of Health and Human Services and outlines the powers and duties of the council.


  • Ohio Rev. Code Ann. § 183.18- Establishes the public health priorities trust fund in the state treasury. Money credited to the fund shall be used for, but not limited to the following purposes: Minority health programs, on which not less than twenty-five per cent of the annual appropriations from the trust fund shall be expended.

  • Ohio Rev. Code Ann. § 185.01 et. seq.- Establishes the Patient Centered Medical Home Education Pilot Project. As a part of the project, the patient centered medical home education advisory group is directed to work with all medical and nursing schools in this state to develop appropriate curricula designed to prepare primary care physicians and advanced practice nurses to practice within the patient centered medical home model of care. The curricula is to include, but not limited to, components that reflect, as appropriate, the special needs of patients who are part of a medically underserved population, including medicaid recipients, individuals without health insurance, individuals with disabilities, individuals with chronic health conditions, and individuals within racial or ethnic minority groups.

  • Ohio Rev. Code Ann. § 3701.78- Establishes a commission on minority health promote health and the prevention of disease among members of minority groups.


  • Okla. Stat. tit. 70, § 625.1 et. seq.- Establishes the Oklahoma Rural Medical Education Loan and Scholarship Fund. The fund is to be administered by the Physician Manpower Training Commission.

  • Okla. Stat. tit. 70, § 697.1 et. seq.- Establishes the Physician Manpower Training Commission to establish and administer cost-sharing programs for internship and residency physician training. Not less than fifty percent (50%) of the subsidy for these programs shall be used in the training of primary health care and family/general practice physicians for the rural and medically underserved areas of the state.

  • Okla. Stat. tit. 70, § 697.9- Establishes the Community Preceptor Physician Training and Work Experience Scholarship Fund. The fund is to be administered by the Physician Manpower Training Commission.


  • Or. Rev. Stat. § 413.250- Establishes the Statewide Health Improvement Program within the Oregon Health Authority to support evidence-based community efforts to prevent chronic disease and reduce the utilization of expensive and invasive acute treatments. Subject to funding, the Authority may award one or more grants to support community-based primary and secondary prevention activities that include, but are not limited to reducing health disparities among populations.

  • Or. Rev. Stat. § 431.375- Directs the Department of Human Services to contract for provision of maternal and child public health services with the tribal governing council of recognized Indian tribes that request to receive funds under certain federal grant programs.

  • Or. Rev. Stat. § 442.466- Directs the Administrator of the Office for Oregon Health Policy and Research to establish and maintain a program that requires reporting entities to report health care data for purposes including, but not limited to evaluating health disparities.

  • Or. Rev. Stat. § 676.400- In order to achieve the goal of universal access to adequate levels of high quality health care at an affordable cost for all Oregonians, regardless of ethnic or cultural background, the legislature directs health professional regulatory boards in the state to establish programs to increase the representation of people of color and bilingual people on the boards and in the professions that they regulate.

  • Or. Rev. Stat. § 442.550 et. seq.- Establishes the Primary Care Services Program, to be administered by the Office of Rural Health, pursuant to rules adopted by the office. The purpose of the program is to provide loan repayments on behalf of naturopathic physicians, physicians, physician assistants, dentists, pharmacists and nurse practitioners who agree to practice in a qualifying practice site.


  • Pa. Cons. Stat. tit. 35 § 5701.901 et. seq.- Establishes the Commonwealth Universal Research Enhancement Program within the Department of Health of the Commonwealth. Priorities for the program are to be set by the Department and shall include the identification of critical research areas, disparities in health status among various Commonwealth populations, expected research outcomes and benefits and disease prevention and treatment methodologies.

  • Pa. Cons. Stat. tit. 62 § 5001.1301 et. seq.- Establishes the Primary Health Care Practitioners Program within the Department of Health to increase the availability of primary health care practitioners to rural and inner-city designated medically underserved areas of this Commonwealth.

Rhode Island

  • R.I. Gen. Laws § 23-1-43- Directs the director of health to establish a minority population health promotion program to provide health information, education, and risk reduction activities to reduce the risk of premature death from preventable disease in minority populations.

  • R.I. Gen. Laws § 23-14.1-1 et. seq.- Establishes the health professional loan repayment program for physicians, dentists, dental hygienists, nurse practitioners, certified nurse midwives, physician assistants and any other eligible health care professional under who desire to serve the health care needs of medically underserved individuals in Rhode Island.

  • R.I. Gen. Laws § 23-64-1 et. seq.- Establishes the Commission for Health Advocacy and Equity.

South Carolina

  • S.C. Code Ann. § 11-11-170- Establishes the Healthcare Tobacco Settlement Trust Fund and specifies that only interest earnings may be appropriated and used for, but not limited to disease prevention and elimination of health disparities: diabetes, HIV/AIDS, hypertension, and stroke, particularly in minority populations.


  • Tenn. Code Ann. § 3-15-401 et. seq.- Creates the health equity commission within the legislative department and sets forth the powers and duties of the commission.

  • Tenn. Code Ann. § 68-1-117- Establishes a program at Meharry Medical College School of Medicine to develop resources for recruiting, training and deploying physicians for service in areas of Tennessee with disadvantaged and medically underserved populations.

  • Tenn. Code Ann. § 68-1-2201 et. seq.- Establishes the Office of Minority Health within the Department of Public Health and sets for the powers and duties of the office.


  • Tex. Human Resources Code Ann. § 2.001 et. seq.- Establishes the Interagency Council for Addressing Disproportionality. One of the stated goals for the council is to assist the Health and Human Services Commission in eliminating health and health access disparities in Texas among racial, multicultural, disadvantaged, ethnic, and regional populations. This chapter expires December 1, 2013.

  • Tex. Education Code Ann. § 51.711 et. seq.- Establishes the medical and health care professions recruitment fund for the purpose of recruiting underrepresented ethnic minorities to programs of health care professions at institutions of higher education.

  • Tex. Education Code Ann. § 58.001 et. seq.- Provides that each resident physician being educated and trained at an accredited school of medicine shall be compensated by that school. Priority consideration is to be given to applicants who demonstrate a willingness to practice in medically underserved areas of Texas.

  • Tex. Education Code Ann. § 63.301 et. seq.-Establishes the permanent fund for minority health research and education to provide grants to institutions of higher education, including Centers for Teacher Education, that conduct research or educational programs that address minority health issues or form partnerships with minority organizations, colleges, or universities to conduct research and educational programs that address minority health issues.

  • Tex. Health & Safety Code Ann. § 107.001 et. seq.- Establishes the Health Disparities Task Force and sets forth the powers and duties of the task force.

  • Tex. Health & Safety Code Ann. § 107A.001 et. seq.- Directs the executive commissioner of the Health and Human Services Commission to maintain an office for the elimination of health disparities in the Health and Human Services Commission and sets forth the powers and duties of the office.

  • Tex. Government Code Ann. § 487.201 et. seq.- Creates the Medically Underserved Community-State Matching Incentive Program where medically underserved communities may sponsor a physician by contributing start-up money for the physician and having that contribution matched wholly or partly by state money.

  • Tex. Government Code Ann. § 487.251 et. seq.- Establishes the Texas Health Service Corps Program for Medically Underserved Areas to assist these communities in recruiting and retaining physicians.

  • Tex. Government Code Ann. § 487.451 et. seq.- Creates the Community Healthcare Awareness and Mentoring Program for Students to identify high school students in rural and underserved urban areas who are interested in serving those areas as health care professionals and partnering them with health care professionals to act as positive role models, mentors, and reference resources.

  • Tex. Government Code Ann. § 487.551 et. seq.- Establishes the Rural Communities Health Care Investment Program to provide loan reimbursement and stipends for health professionals who serve in those communities.


  • Utah Code Ann. § 9-9-104.6- Provides that the American Indian-Alaskan Native Health Liaison may participate in at least three of the joint meetings described in Subsection 9-9- 104.5(2)(a).

  • Utah Code Ann. § 26-7-2 et. seq.-  Establishes the Office of Health Disparities Reduction within the Utah Department of Health to address multicultural and minority health issues in the state. Subject to budget constraints, the executive director shall appoint an individual as the American Indian-Alaskan Native Health Liaison.

  • Utah Code Ann. § 26-7-2-  Establishes the Center for Multicultural Health within the Utah Department of Health to address multicultural and minority health issues in the state.

  • Utah Code Ann.§ 26-10b-101 et. seq.- Subject to appropriations specified by the Legislature for this purpose, the department may make grants to public and nonprofit entities for the cost of operation of providing primary health care services to medically underserved populations.


  • Va. Code § 32.1-14- Requires the State Board of Health to submit an annual report to the Governor and General Assembly which includes, but is not limited to statistics and analysis regarding the health status and conditions of minority populations in the Commonwealth by age, gender, and locality.

  • Va. Code § 32.1-19- Requires the State Health Commissioner to designate a senior staff member of the Department, who shall be a licensed physician, to oversee minority health efforts of the Department.

  • Va. Code § 32.1-122.6:1- Establishes a physician loan repayment program for recent medical school graduates agree to perform a period of medical service in the Commonwealth in a medically underserved area or a health professional shortage area.

  • Va. Code § 32.1-122.7. Establishes the Virginia Health Workforce Development Authority to facilitate the development of a statewide health professions pipeline that identifies, educates, recruits, and retains a diverse, appropriately geographically distributed and culturally competent quality workforce.


  • Wash. Rev. Code § 28B.115.010 et. seq.- Establishes the health professional loan repayment and scholarship program for credentialed health professionals serving in health professional shortage areas.

  • Wash. Rev. Code § 43.20.270 et. seq.- Creates the Governor's interagency coordinating council on health disparities, sets forth the powers and duties of the council, and directs it to develop an action plan and statewide policy to include health impact reviews that measure and address other social determinants of health that lead to disparities as well as the contributing factors of health that can have broad impacts on improving status, health literacy, physical activity, and nutrition.

  • Wash. Rev. Code § 43.70.590- Directs the Department of Health to establish an American Indian health care delivery plan in conjunction with the area Indian health services system and an advisory group comprised of Indian and non-Indian health care facilities and providers.

  • Wash. Rev. Code § 43.80.615- Requires the state Department of Health to establish a multicultural health awareness and education program to train health professionals to care for diverse populations.


  • Wis. Stat. § 250.20- Identifies health disparities reduction and elimination as a long term goal in the state. The law identifies numerous strategies and programs used to achieve this goal.

 Note: List may not be comprehensive, but is representative of state laws that exist. NCSL appreciates additions and corrections.


This webpage is funded through the support of Amgen and HHS's Office of the Assistant Secretary of Health (OASH), Office of Minority Health.