Applications Open to Participate In Ground Breaking Review into African and Caribbean Health Inequalities
31st July 2020

Applications Open to Participate In Ground Breaking Review into African and Caribbean Health Inequalities

Lewisham Council has announced applications are now open for an external advisory board which will form a key part of the Birmingham and Lewisham African and Caribbean Health Inequalities Review (BLACHIR).

Launched in May 2020, BLACHIR was established to provide much needed research into health inequalities faced by Black African and Caribbean communities. Through sharing knowledge and lived experiences between academics and members of Birmingham and Lewisham communities, the review will inform the work of the Health and Wellbeing Board and influence both Councils, NHS, academic and community and voluntary sector partners to make sustainable changes that start to address decades of inequalities.

The external advisory board will work alongside key thinkers on BAME health inequalities from an academic board with the purpose to bring together a diverse range of views to a regular series of discussions.

Residents appointed to the advisory board will be given the opportunity for seldom-heard voices to be brought into what will be an important evidence-led research project with bold aims.

The Birmingham and Lewisham African & Caribbean Health Inequalities Review (BLACHIR) will use this expertise for the review which will cover an 18-month period.

Birmingham is home to 8% of the overall African and Caribbean population of England. In Lewisham, Black Africans and those of Caribbean descent represent the largest population groups, amongst those of BAME heritage.

National research has clearly highlighted significant health inequalities affecting Black African and Caribbean communities, which are perpetuated by inequalities in the wider determinants of health such as housing, employment and education. These have been exacerbated by Covid-19 and undoubtedly underpin some of the excess deaths in these populations.

Dr Catherine Mbema Director of Public Health at Lewisham Council said:

“We know that there are significant health inequalities in Black African and Caribbean communities and so this is really exciting opportunity for Lewisham to be part of a national conversation on tackling them. We are looking for members of the community with lived experience to come forward and take part in this important research and use their voice to inform the work of the partnership.”