Poor minorities delayseeking needed mammo

March 1, 2009
Volume 31, Issue 4

A recent study hints that by lowering accessbarriers to mammography, the governmentcould offset the tendency of uninsuredminority women to delay seeking medicalhelp, including mammography.

A recent study hints that by lowering access barriers to mammography, the government could offset the tendency of uninsured minority women to delay seeking medical help, including mammography.

University of North Carolina researchers looked at the correlation between the insurance status of 617 breast cancer patients and the stage and size of their tumors at the time of diagnosis. They found that uninsured non-Caucasian patients have a higher probability of presenting with a more advanced cancer stage and larger tumor size than insured patients. They published their results in Academic Radiology (2008;15[10]: 1255-1258). Dr.Wende Logan-Young, director of the Elizabeth Wende Breast Clinic in Rochester, NY, confirmed that uninsured minority women are less likely than other atrisk populations to undergo screening mammography. An effort by the Obama administration to cover uninsured U.S. residents could change this trend, she said.