Cancer Causes & Control

, 20:1681

A community effort to reduce the black/white breast cancer mortality disparity in Chicago

  • David Ansell
  • Paula Grabler
  • Steven Whitman
  • Carol Ferrans
  • Jacqueline Burgess-Bishop
  • Linda Rae Murray
  • Ruta Rao
  • Elizabeth Marcus
Original paper

DOI: 10.1007/s10552-009-9419-7

Cite this article as:
Ansell, D., Grabler, P., Whitman, S. et al. Cancer Causes Control (2009) 20: 1681. doi:10.1007/s10552-009-9419-7

Abstract

Background

The Metropolitan Chicago Breast Cancer Taskforce was formed to address a growing black/white breast cancer mortality disparity in Chicago. The Taskforce explored three hypotheses: black women in Chicago receive fewer mammograms, black women receive mammograms of inferior quality, and black women have inadequate access to quality of treatment for breast cancer.

Methods

A total of 102 individuals from 74 Chicago area organizations participated in the Task Force participating in three work groups from January to September 2007. The work groups held focus groups of providers, organized town hall meetings in four Chicago communities, gathered black/white breast cancer mortality data for Chicago, the United States, and New York City, and conducted a mammography capacity and quality survey of mammography facilities.

Results

Chicago’s black and white breast cancer mortality rates were the same in 1980. By the late 1990s, a substantial disparity was present, and by 2005, the black breast cancer mortality rate was 116% higher than the white rate. In 2007, 206,000 screening mammograms were performed for women living in Chicago, far short of the 588,000 women in the 40–69 age range in Chicago. Facilities that served predominately minority women were less likely to be academic or private institutions (p < .03), less likely to have digital mammography (p < .003), and less likely to have dedicated breast imaging specialists reading the films (p < .003). Black women and providers serving them reported significant difficulties in accessing needed care for breast cancer screening and treatment.

Conclusion

There are significant access barriers to high quality mammography and treatment services that could be contributing to the mortality differences in Chicago. A metropolitan wide taskforce has been established to address the disparity.

Keywords

Breast cancer screening Breast cancer treatment Racial disparity, community interventions Breast cancer disparity 

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • David Ansell
    • 1
  • Paula Grabler
    • 2
  • Steven Whitman
    • 3
  • Carol Ferrans
    • 4
  • Jacqueline Burgess-Bishop
    • 5
  • Linda Rae Murray
    • 6
  • Ruta Rao
    • 1
  • Elizabeth Marcus
    • 7
  1. 1.544 Academic FacilityRush University Medical CenterChicagoUSA
  2. 2.Northwestern Memorial HospitalChicagoUSA
  3. 3.Sinai Urban Health InstituteChicagoUSA
  4. 4.University of Illinois at ChicagoChicagoUSA
  5. 5.American Cancer SocietyChicagoUSA
  6. 6.Cook County Department of Public HealthChicagoUSA
  7. 7.Stroger Hospital of Cook CountyChicagoUSA

Personalised recommendations