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Can racial health disparities be effectively reduced?

Studies show that minority patients generally receive a lower quality of health care compared to white patients. How can these disparities be reduced? A supplement to the October 2007 issue of Medical Care Research and Review, published by SAGE, thoroughly explores the effectiveness of health care interventions to answer that question.

The supplement features research from the Finding Answers: Disparities Research for Change initiative, which reviewed over 200 interventions to reduce racial and ethnic disparities in health care. The literature review provides health care organizations, providers and payers with promising intervention recommendations on how they can reduce racial and ethnic disparities in their own organizations in the areas of: cardiovascular disease, diabetes, depression, and breast cancer. The study also examined the effect of two specific approachescultural leverage, and pay-for-performance incentives.

The authors in this supplement provide a cutting-edge, systematic summary of strategies to promote equitable health outcomes for communities of color, writes the supplements editor, Dr. Jeroan Allison, professor of medicine at the University of Alabama at Birmingham This work serves as a tangible reminder that, although progress has been made, much remains to be done.

Policy makers should support proven interventions and funding agencies should invest in expanded and coordinated research to better clarify the causes and consequences of health disparities, he added. Interventions should be developed to promote equitable health outcomes for communities of color and researchers should address our understanding of how disparities operate, testing new interventions to move from understanding to change.


Contact: Judy Erickson
SAGE Publications

Page: 1

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