Date of Award


Document Type

Honors Thesis (Open Access)


Colby College. Science, Technology and Society Program


Ashton Wesner

Second Advisor

Nadia El-Shaarawi


Healthcare inequities within the United States’ Western model of medicine have existed for hundreds of years. The purpose of this year-long project was to analyze the existing qualitative and quantitative studies of healthcare barriers for the Southern Maine Somali Bantu population, as well as compiling narrative pieces from Maine non-governmental organizations that provide community resources. In doing so, the idea of healthcare access and literacy was analyzed through means of understanding systemic barriers. Overall, the findings of this exploratory project point to a lack of cultural humility within medicine, the importance of recognizing intersectional identities in quality of healthcare, and the usage of healthcare literacy as a means for the healthcare system to exclude the Somali Bantu community from receiving equitable care.


Somali Bantu, public health, healthcare, medical inequities, Southern Maine, community advocates, community healthcare workers

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Public Health Commons