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Black Women More Likely to Die From Breast Cancer: Report
Date:11/14/2012

reast cancer diagnosis.

"Twenty percent of black women experience follow-up time of more than 60 days after an abnormal mammogram, compared to only 12 percent of white women," he noted.

Moreover, only 69 percent of black women begin treatment within 30 days, compared with 83 percent of white women, Plescia said.

"Fewer black women receive surgery, radiation and other treatments they need, compared to whites," he said. "Deaths rates could be reduced 20 percent if the same treatment was received by both groups of women."

Other highlights of the report:

  • Some 40,000 U.S. women die from breast cancer each year.
  • There are nine more deaths per 100 breast cancer cases among black women than white women.
  • More black women are diagnosed with advanced-stage breast cancer (45 percent) than white women (35 percent).

"The full benefit of breast cancer screening can only be achieved when we ensure that every woman receives timely follow-up and high-quality treatment," Plescia said.

For her part, Arias believes the Affordable Care Act, which includes free mammography screening, will boost black women's access to health care.

"The lack of access to health care has been a major reason why women do not get cancer screening tests," she said.

Breast cancer is the most common cancer in the United States. It is the second leading cause of cancer death among U.S. women, according to the CDC.

More information

For more information on breast cancer, visit the American Cancer Society.

SOURCES: Nov. 14, 2012, press conference with: Ileana Arias, Ph.D., deputy director, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; Marcus Plescia, M.D., M.P.H., director, Division of Cancer Prevention and Control, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; No
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