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Racial and Ethnic Approaches to Community Health

Racial and Ethnic Approaches to Community Health (REACH) logo

REACH is a vital part of CDC’s efforts to end racial and ethnic health gaps.

Through REACH, awardee partners plan and carry out local, culturally appropriate programs to address a wide range of health issues among African Americans, American Indians, Hispanics/Latinos, Asian Americans, Alaska Natives, and Pacific Islanders.

Why is ending health gaps important?

CDC believes every person should be able to reach his or her full health potential. CDC seeks to remove barriers to health caused by race or ethnicity, education, income, location, or other social factors.

Health gaps remain widespread among racial and ethnic minority groups.

  • Heart disease is the leading cause of death for people of most racial and ethnic minorities in the United States.
  • Non-Hispanic blacks have the highest rates of obesity (44%) followed by Mexican Americans (39%).
  • Compared to non-Hispanic whites, the risk of diagnosed diabetes is 77% higher among non-Hispanic blacks, 66% higher among Hispanics/Latinos, and 18% higher among Asian Americans.

What is REACH doing in the community?

REACH partners involve members of the local community to identify, develop, and share strategies that work to reduce health gaps. Their efforts address a wide range of health issues, such as:

  • Heart disease.
  • Diabetes.
  • Breast and cervical cancer.
  • Infant mortality.
  • Asthma.
  • Vaccines.
  • Obesity.

Racial and ethnic health gaps are complex. They are affected by factors related to individuals, communities, society, culture, and the environment. REACH cuts across a number of proven and promising programs that address these many factors by:

  • Supporting community coalitions that plan, carry out, evaluate, and share local strategies to end gaps in chronic diseases.
  • Providing the local infrastructure to carry out, coordinate, evaluate, refine, and share successful programs.
  • Supporting national and international organizations that have local affiliates and chapters to share proven and promising strategies and culturally based community practices to end racial and ethnic health gaps.
  • Increasing the evidence for strategies that work to reduce obesity and high blood pressure in racial and ethnic communities.
  • Funding community-based organizations to reduce health gaps.

Learn more at About REACH or at the links below.

New REACH Programs

Main Topics

  • REACH Communities

    See the REACH communities on a map or listed by health priority area or race/ethnicity.

  • Resource Library

    Access resources from CDC and others related to REACH and reducing health gaps.

  • Publications

    Find publications related to REACH—organized by health priority areas, racial/ethnic groups, state, year, and more.