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Study suggests equal insurance coverage may not level lung cancer disparities

Hope Landrine, Jimmy Efird and Mark Bowling
(2/18/15) — A new study by researchers at East Carolina University suggests that equivalent health insurance coverage may not level the disparities between African-American and Caucasian lung cancer patients when it comes to the stage at which they’re diagnosed.

Over the course of two years, researchers at the Brody School of Medicine’s Center for Health Disparities and the Leo W. Jenkins Cancer Center examined the medical records of 717 black and 1,634 white lung cancer patients who were treated at the cancer center between 2001 and 2010. They found that – after adjusting for age, sex and smoking history – blacks had at least a 14 percent greater risk of being diagnosed with a more advanced stage of lung cancer than whites for all insurance types other than Medicaid.

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