As you know, many social disparities are identified, studied, and addressed by analyzing census data. However, in an effort to protect privacy, the Census Bureau plans to use new mathematical processes to alter 2020 census data. The Census Bureau will not make precise alteration processes public but they are taking public comment on the issue. Of great importance (beyond increasing knowledge of health disparities based on race, gender, age, and geography) is the effect it will have on redistricting and on equitable distribution of public funds. For an explanation of this process and its effects on redistricting see
Differential Privacy for Census Data Explained The U.S. Census Bureau has had a longstanding requirement to ensure data from individuals and households remains confidential. For the 2020 census, it plans to use a new approach: “differential privacy.” This webpage provides background. the current status of decision-making for implementing differential privacy, questions data users may want to consider and more.
While differential privacy is intended to protect confidentiality for respondents, it has implications for smaller subpopulations. For instance, the National Congress of American Indians notes, “The implementation of differential privacy could introduce substantial amounts of noise into statistics for small populations living in remote areas, potentially diminishing the quality of statistics about tribal nations.”
For researchers and others wanting to learn more about how the Census Bureau will “jitter” the data, watch this 12 minute video.
Those who are interested in how the bureau balances confidentiality and usability—or, in census parlance, how the “privacy loss budget” should be allocated—can provide comments to the bureau through its data demonstration project, firstname.lastname@example.org.
While there is no cutoff date for comments, a final decision will be made by fall 2020. Comments received in the spring will be easier for the bureau to incorporate.
My brother, Walt Davis, and his wife Isabel and I put together a game to test knowledge of Texas maternal mortality.
The game is loosely based on Family Feud. Check it out and feel free to download and use it wherever you encounter curious people wanting to improve women’s health in Texas. Please cite as Fact Checking Maternal Mortality.2020.www.curious-nurse.com
This respected Pediatrician died recently following childbirth. Read more of her story here. We can’t rationalize that the increased risk for Black mothers is simply due to lack of access to care, or lack of knowledge about risk factors. There is something much more systemic at work and must be addressed.
There will be discussion about Maternal Mortality as we head in to the 2020 elections. Here is the Democratic conversation.
Read about how Kamala Harris plans to address maternal mortality. Notice that she calls out Implicit Bias and Systemic Racism as factors related to maternal mortality. Texas would do well to do the same.
Recently, I was asked what event started me on my journey toward academia and research. That was an easy question to answer.
Take a look at this article, Outrageous_Outraged.pdf, which appeared in Nursing Outlook in 1980. It was written by my former boss when I was a liaison nurse at the City of Fort Worth Health Department. I am still struggling to solve problems of inadequate care for women giving birth.
A group of citizen scientists, nurses, and researchers are asking for help to raise money to pay processing costs to obtain homicide reports from Medical Examiners around the state of Texas. Maternal Homicide goes under-reported on death certificates. We have to find new ways of uncovering these murders so we can take action to prevent them.