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Racial disparities in the outcomes of patients with chronic kidney disease abound
Date:6/3/2008

A number of biological, societal, and health carerelated issues contribute to disparities in the outcomes of US patients with kidney disease, according to two articles appearing in the July 2008 issue of the Journal of the American Society Nephrology (JASN). The articles indicate that immediate and substantial efforts on a number of fronts are needed to provide better health care for affected Americans. Such concerted efforts can provide patients with the personalized, effective, and predictable care they deserve.

Many studies have documented racial and ethnic disparities in health and health care. Regarding kidney disease, black and Hispanics patients in the United States are more likely than white patients to develop kidney failure requiring dialysis or transplantation. The recently published government document, Health United States 2007, reported that black patients with end-stage renal disease (USRD) make up 33% of all patients on the kidney transplant waitlist but only 13% of the general population. Also, black patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) accelerate faster to ESRD than white patients and are significantly more likely to develop ESRD and to do so at an earlier age than white patients.

Another government-generated document, the 2007 National Health Care Disparities Report, noted that black adults in need of chronic hemodialysis are almost equally as likely as whites to receive adequate dialysis; however, the proportion of black dialysis patients who are registered on the waitlist for transplantation remains significantly lower than that of whites.

To further examine the issues relating to health differences among patients with kidney disease, Dr. Keith Norris of Charles R. Drew University in Lynwood, CA, and Dr. Allen Nissenson of the University of California, Los Angeles, investigated the situation and provided potential solutions. The authors point to a number of factors that may play a role in these and
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Contact: Shari Leventhal
sleventhal@asn-online.org
202-416-0658
American Society of Nephrology
Source:Eurekalert  

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