Current Health Status of Blacks in the United States: The Case for Future Improvement of Healthcare Delivery
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The health of black people in the United States is an ever-evolving situation. Information that was pertinent 10 years ago has changed significantly, and it is safe to say that there is always good news and bad news no matter what window we use to view African American health. As time has passed, unfavorable socioeconomic conditions have deeply impacted the third largest racial/ethnic group in the country to the extent that healthcare disparities have continued to lead to higher mortality and greater morbidity for blacks from most major illnesses and diseases compared to other subpopulations. The evidence of these devastating effects is collected by several reliable sources and is produced on a periodic basis that allows us to access the metrics used to follow the trends and perhaps to make some decisions about how to correct the problems that are observed. In this chapter, a compendium of information on health of the African American population entitled Vital Signs, produced by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), is used as a basis for indicating those trends and identifying those problems. The chapter that follows this one will address possible solutions to the problems.
KeywordsVital statistics Life expectancy Whites Blacks Death rates Socioeconomic conditions Mortality gap Epidemiology Mortality Morbidity Health status Geographic Cancer Cardiovascular disease Lifestyle Racial Ethnic Educational Diabetes
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