The Institute of Medicine defines healthcare disparities as “racial or ethnic differences in the quality of healthcare that are not due to access-related factors or clinical needs, preferences, and appropriateness of intervention.”

Racial and ethnic minorities tend to receive poorer quality of care compared with non-minorities, even when access-related factors, such as insurance status and income, are controlled. The sources of racial and ethnic health care disparities include differences in geography, lack of access to adequate health coverage, communication difficulties between patient and provider, cultural barriers, provider stereotyping, and lack of access to providers. In addition, disparities in the healthcare system contribute to the overall disparities in health status that affect racial and ethnic minorities.

What does this mean? Black Americans simply are not receiving the same quality of healthcare that their white counterparts receive. And yes, this is still happening in the year 2020.

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