As a person of color the health system due to systematic racism isn’t in one’s favour, health concerns are ignored with proof of the high pregnancy mortality rate. Thankfully, it’s being changed. Due to personal frustrations following lack of access and opportunities for Black and Latinx patients in terms of provision of adequate health service, Howard University Professor Kimberly Wilson is changing the narrative.
Late 2018, Kimberly Wilson created HUED, an app which helps establish connections between black patients and doctors though technology within communities.
“As a 30-something, I was traumatized by this experience, and in that, I realized my story is the same as countless others, though many are unequipped to be their own self-advocate,” said Wilson to BLACK ENTERPRISE via email. “That was when I developed a solution for improving the patient care experience.”
According to her, the COVID-19 pandemic has given exposure to the disparities Black and Latinx patients face when seeking healthcare services leading more consumers to the app.
“Where investors and other stakeholders were uninterested and unbothered by the work that HUED was doing, even just a year ago,” she explains, “there’s been a spotlight on healthcare that is helping us to validate a problem that we’ve sought to address well before this moment in time.”
The health app recently partnered with Vaseline and award-winning actress Regina King to collaborate on a search tool to help people find dermatologists and other specialist doctors of color. “Through this partnership, we co-created a search tool with Vaseline specifically focused on helping people identify and connect with dermatologists of color and those experienced in treating skin of color,” said Wilson.
“The online platform will also offer educational resources that provide expert recommendations on how to treat and monitor skin at home, understanding when to seek a dermatologist for proper care, and how to best prepare for an appointment with the right questions and what to expect.” Black Enterprise reports.
Wilson expresses hope that through services rendered, disparities within the health care system can be combated thereby reforming the system and helping those within the community. “HUED’s solution not only reduces the economic toll of payers (resulting from racial disparities),” she says, “but also drastically improves health outcomes for people of color by allowing patients to search, review, and book culturally competent physicians that specifically understand their physical, mental, and cultural needs.”