West Side United addresses health disparities at annual convention

"Building wealth to increase health" was the theme of Tuesday’s panel at West Side Union’s annual community convention.

The panel discussed the relationship between health and wealth gaps for African American and Latino residents. 

According to the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, medical care only accounts for about 20% of what contributes to health outcomes while the other 80% is driven by factors like education, living wage, and access to transportation.

Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson delivered the event's opening remarks.

"With the long-term and sustained commitments to our people and our neighborhoods, we can close the wealth and gaps that persist in our city," said Johnson. "The most essential component to the work that we are doing is partnership."

West Side United is working to eliminate the 14-year life expectancy gap separating Black and brown communities and those who live in more affluent areas.