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Revealed: Racial Disparity in Cancer Diagnosis by Screening in the UK | Cancer


Blacks are more than one-third less likely to be diagnosed with cancer by screening than whites. EnglandThe first study of that sort prompted a call for targeted efforts to improve the level of their uptake.

Screening programs save lives by preventing or early detection of cancer when treatment is likely to be effective.

In the United Kingdom, cervical cancer screening is provided to women aged 25-64 years, breast cancer screening is provided to women aged 50-70 years, and intestinal cancer every two years for all persons aged 60-74. A home screening kit is provided.

However, the latest research shows a complete disparity when screening diagnostic rates between different ethnic groups for the first time. A study of more than 240,000 cancer patients over a decade found that 8.61% of patients were diagnosed by screening.

By ethnic group, whites accounted for 8.27%, which is almost the same as the national average, but blacks accounted for 5.11%. The findings suggest that blacks are 38% less likely to be diagnosed by screening than whites.

Screening for mixed-race patients was much higher at 9.49%, even higher at 10.09% in Asian patients, almost twice as high as in black patients.Results were published in the British Journal of cancer..

“Our sample of black patients was less likely to be diagnosed by screening, consistent with less uptake in screening opportunities,” said a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Exeter School of Medicine, Cancer Research UK. One postdoctoral fellow, Tanimora Martins, said. .. “Changing this trend may require more targeted efforts. We need to step up efforts to improve the prevalence of screening.”

Jabeer Butt, Chief Executive Officer Race The Equality Foundation stated that the findings should encourage urgent action.

“Cancer screening saves lives,” he said. “That’s why it’s so important that effective outreach and culturally relevant interventions are prioritized to reduce health inequality.

“We know that minorities, especially black Africans, have reported low awareness of cancer symptoms and high barriers to seeking help, but for colorectal cancer. Previous studies of interventions have also shown that talking to someone who explains the steps in the screening process in advance can improve screening uptake in a small number of patients.

“Other strategies, such as training doctors to effectively communicate with inexperienced patients, have also been shown to be effective. Fully implement these solutions to reduce cancer inequality. It’s time to make it a thing of the past. “

The NHS Cancer screening has several benefits, including the ability of medical professionals to detect problems early before the patient develops symptoms. Early detection of problems may mean that treatment is more effective.

For patients, knowing that they have or are likely to have a health problem can help them make better informed decisions. In some cases, screening can prevent death from bowel, breast, and cervical cancer.

Michelle Mitchell, CEO of Cancer Research UK, who funded the study, said there were concerns about a decline in screening diagnostic rates for black patients.

“There are many reasons why people can’t be screened, from the practical barriers to attending appointments to the fear of potential cancer diagnoses,” she said. “We need more detailed ethnicity data to enable us to understand the big picture and target interventions to improve screening uptake.

“Cancer screening programs play an important role in diagnosing cancer early and reducing health inequality, where treatment is likely to be effective. Increasing cancer diagnosis and saving lives. To do this, it is important to remove screening barriers. “

Martins said one possible solution could be for GPs to raise awareness of the benefits of screening. “Because black patients use primary care frequently, this may provide an ideal setting for targeted interventions to improve screening awareness and uptake,” he said. rice field.

“Recent trials have shown that targeted interventions to promote cancer awareness and support the quest are relevant. [with] Improvement of consultation rate. Such interventions may be indicated to facilitate breast cancer screening for black women. “




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