Towards equitable investments for addressing the challenges and needs of older African Americans in the State of Ohio is a mixed methods study sponsored by the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services. This report explores the landscape of older African American vulnerability at the state level, producing the first online statewide older adult vulnerability mapping tool. This tool empowers service providers and policymakers to identify at the census tract level where the state’s most vulnerable older adults are living in greater numbers to facilitate the targeting of programming and policies aimed at improving the wellbeing and outcomes of some of Ohio’s most vulnerable elders. The quantitative components of the study, led by Dr. Mikyung Baek, explores older adult access to and use of broadband services as well as physical and mental and behavioral health disparities through Medicaid data analysis. Kirwan also directly engaged older African American Ohioans in focus group conversations facilitated by Kip Holley. Analysis of this qualitative direct engagement, led by Glennon Sweeney and combined with our quantitative findings, informed a suite of 16 recommendations for the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services to consider aimed at improving access, expanding access, increasing inclusion, enhancing experiences, and strengthening place. This study was released on October 5, 2023, during our Fall Forum Series.
If you would like to know more about this research or schedule a presentation of the result, please contact Glennon Sweeney, Kirwan’s Community Outreach Senior Representative: firstname.lastname@example.org