Racial Segregation Linked to Lung Cancer Deaths
A new study boasts an extremely interesting claim: African-Americans who live in an area that is predominately Black have a higher chance of dying from lung cancer than Blacks who live in more racially mixed communities. Researchers from the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center analyzed national data about lung cancer deaths between the years 2003 and 2007. They found that overall, Black lung cancer patients had a 59 percent death rate, compared with 51 percent of white lung cancer patients. But when they looked closer at racially segregated counties, the stats for Blacks got worse, reported Reuters:
Black patients living in diverse counties had a mortality rate of about 52 percent, which was comparable to white patients. But Black patients living in highly segregated counties had a mortality rate of about 63 percent. Black patients living in moderately segregated areas had a mortality rate of 57 percent. Ironically, lung cancer rates for Blacks didn’t change whether they lived in all-white or racially mixed areas.
So what gives?