The Raghavan Article Reviewed
Health-Care Disparities, Civil Rights, and Human Rights
OTIS W. BRAWLEY, MD
Georgia Cancer Center for Excellence
Deputy Director, Winship Cancer Institute-Emory University
Professor of Hematology, Oncology, and Medicine
Emory University School of Medicine
April 1, 2007
Physicians, health-care providers, and researchers must also ask, "Are we posing the right scientific questions?" Important questions for health-care researchers include:
• What are the elements of poverty that influence the experience of the cancer patient and influence cancer biology?
• How can we provide adequate high-quality care (to include preventive care) to those who so often have not received it?
The solutions are the responsibility of society as a whole to address and not just the medical community. They include educational efforts concerning diet, exercise, and other healthful behaviors.
Over the past decade, we have made tremendous strides in realizing and defining the problem of disparities in health care. It is an unsettling and embarrassing truth that we as a society have made only meager efforts to solve the problem. While disparities in health care are a civil rights issue, the ready availability of adequate health care is a human right.
Otis W. Brawley, MD
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