Author Interviews, Autism, JAMA, Mental Health Research, Pediatrics, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 08.03.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. Kevin Lu PhD Clinical Pharmacy and Outcomes Sciences College of Pharmacy Medical University of South Carolina MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?  Response: It is documented that the prevalence of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) has been increasing in the past few years. However, no information on potential racial and ethnic disparities in ASD diagnosis can be found in the literature. Most recently, the possible structural racism and health inequities have been a concern for the public and policy makers. (more…)
AHA Journals, Author Interviews, Heart Disease, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Stroke / 05.03.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Fernando D Testai, MD, PhD, FAHA Associate Professor of Neurology and Rehabilitation Stroke Medical Director University of Illinois Health MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Stroke constitutes a leading cause of disability and mortality in the United States. Large observational studies have shown that up to 90% of the strokes are caused by modifiable vascular risk factors, including hypertension, diabetes mellitus, and several others. In addition, previous history of stroke is one of the most powerful predictors of recurrent stroke. Thus, controlling vascular risk factors in patients with stroke is of paramount importance. To this end, the American Heart Association and the American Stroke Association have developed specific targets for blood pressure, glycemic, and cholesterol levels. (more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Vaccine Studies / 03.03.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Laura M. Bogart, PhD Senior Behavioral Scientist RAND Corporation Santa Monica, CA 90407-2138 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Recent media polls continue to show that Black Americans are less likely to intend to get the COVID-19 vaccine than White Americans, and initial state data show a similar racial/ethnic disparity in vaccination rates. Initial uptake of the vaccine has been significantly affected by inequities in vaccine access and supply. In addition to these challenges, other factors contribute to hesitancy around vaccination, including self-perceived risk of infection, trust in the vaccine itself, trust in healthcare systems, healthcare providers, and policymakers who support the vaccine, and trust in the pharmaceutical industry and clinical research. In this study, we conducted a survey of a nationally representative sample of 207 Black Americans in late 2020, after initial COVID-19 vaccine effectiveness and safety data were released to the public. We also did in-depth interviews with a subsample of those surveyed who said that they would not get vaccinated. In addition, we engaged with a stakeholder advisory committee comprised of individuals who represent different subgroups and organizations in Black communities in the U.S., in order to discuss the results and make recommendations for policies to increase COVID-19 vaccination among Black Americans. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Hepatitis - Liver Disease, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 25.02.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Andrea D. Branch PhD Professor of Medicine Division of Liver Diseases Associate Professor of Surgery Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Liver cancer is a deadly condition with a high mortality rate. About 90% of people who develop liver cancer have cirrhosis (advanced liver scarring) due to a chronic underlying liver disease. Patients with cirrhosis are advised to undergo liver cancer surveillance. Early detection improves survival, but diagnosis requires more than a blood test, which makes surveillance complex and expensive. Black individuals are more likely to develop liver cancer than white individuals and are more likely to die from it. Black patients also have more advanced liver cancer at the time of diagnosis than Whites. We aimed to identify additional factors that distinguish liver cancer in African Americans, focusing on patients with hepatitis C virus infection, the most common chronic liver disease in people who die from liver cancer in the United States. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cost of Health Care, Dermatology, Gender Differences, JAMA, Medicare, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 18.02.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Lauren A. V. Orenstein, MD | She/her/hers Assistant Professor of Dermatology Robert A. Swerlick, MD Professor and Alicia Leizman Stonecipher Chair of Dermatology Emory University School of Medicine Atlanta, GA 30322 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Financial incentives have the potential to drive provider behavior, even unintentionally. The aim of this study was to evaluate differences in clinic “productivity” measures that occur in outpatient dermatology encounters. Specifically, we used data from 2016-2020 at one academic dermatology practice to evaluate differences in work relative value units (wRVUs, a measure of clinical productivity) and financial reimbursement by patient race, sex, and age. 66,463 encounters were included in this study, among which 70.1% of encounters were for white patients, 59.6% were for females, and the mean age was 55.9 years old. (more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Education, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Social Issues / 04.02.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Ankur Dalsania Rutgers New Jersey Medical School (NJMS) M.D. Candidate 2021 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Similar to past pandemics, prior studies and news articles have highlighted the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 mortality in marginalized populations, especially Black Americans. Rather than biological differences, other factors like neighborhood conditions, educational attainment, economic stability, healthcare access, and social contexts have been hypothesized to influence the racial disparities. Using county-level data, we sought to quantitatively determine how these factors, collectively referred to as social determinants of health, impact COVID-19 mortality in Black Americans.  (more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, JAMA, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Social Issues / 29.01.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Renuka Tipirneni, MD, MSc, FACP Assistant Professor Holder of the Grace H. Elta MD Department of Internal Medicine Early Career Endowment Award 2019-2024 University of Michigan Department of Internal Medicine, Divisions of General Medicine and Hospital Medicine, and Institute for Healthcare Policy & Innovation Ann Arbor, MI MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: As there have been significant racial/ethnic disparities in US COVID-19 infections and health outcomes including death, we investigated county-level social factors that may explain these inequities. Specifically, we examined the association between the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Social Vulnerability Index (a composite measure of social disadvantage) and COVID-19 incidence and mortality rates. We found that with just a one-point increase in the ten-point scale, there was a 14% increase in incidence rate and 14% increase in mortality rate. This equated to approximately 87 excess COVID-19 infections and 3 deaths per 100,000 population.  (more…)
Author Interviews, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Weight Research / 26.01.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Raveena Chara Loma Linda University Loma Linda, CA MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? latin food fried food obesityResponse: In a country struggling with an epidemic of obesity, Hispanics are one of the fastest growing population groups in the U.S. and have the highest prevalence of obesity. They are also least likely to enroll in weight reduction programs, complete them, and successfully lose weight (though reasons for this remain elusive). Obesity- a leading predisposing factor for many chronic diseases - is a complex biophysical phenomenon shaped by many factors, including a person’s social environment, health and culture. Culture permeates many aspects of one’s life including how a person views weight and behaviors associated with eating and physical activity. Indeed, for many values and norms about what is culturally acceptable and views on “body weight” vary culturally and affect their decisions about weight and weight loss. This too is the case within the Hispanic population in the US. Given the rising human and financial impact of obesity, preventing and reducing obesity, diabetes and other weight related medical conditions is a growing priority, especially for low income Hispanics.  (more…)
Author Interviews, Breast Cancer, Genetic Research, JAMA, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 22.01.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Kent Hoskins, MD Eileen Lindsay Heidrick Professor in Oncology Division of Hematology/Oncology University of Illinois at Chicago Director of Cancer Genetics Co-Leader, Breast Cancer Research Group University of Illinois Cancer Center MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The racial disparity in breast cancer mortality emerged in the US in the late 1980s in the wake of widespread implementation of mammography screening and the development of successful systemic adjuvant therapies for early breast cancer. Unfortunately, more than three decades later, Black women in the US still have a 40% higher mortality rate from breast cancer compared with non-Hispanic White women despite similar disease incidence. Health disparities research has primarily focused on the fact that Black women have a higher incidence of the aggressive triple-negative subtype, and that they are more likely to present with more advanced stages of disease. As important as those factors are, in recent years our group and others reported that Black women with hormone receptor-positive breast cancer have worse survival than non-Hispanic white women even after adjustment for stage at diagnosis and treatment. Since nearly 2/3 of breast cancers in Black women are hormone receptor-positive, this is a significant contributor to the overall mortality disparity. Importantly, these studies also suggested that Black women disproportionately develop biologically aggressive forms of hormone-dependent breast cancer, which is typically considered a more favorable disease subtype. Using data on more than 70,000 patients from the SEER registry that is linked to data from Genomic Health Laboratory, which provides the Oncotype DX recurrence score (the most commonly ordered prognostic/predictive multi-gene expression assay for early breast cancer), we set out to address three questions: 1) is there evidence of disproportionately aggressive tumor biology among Black women with hormone receptor (HR)-positive breast cancer, as reflected in the Oncotype DX recurrence score? 2) Is there a racial survival disparity even among patients with early stage, axillary node-negative tumors with comparable recurrence scores on the Oncotype assay? and 3) Is there is a difference in the prognostic accuracy of the Oncotype assay between Black and non-Hispanic white patients, since there was limited representation of Black women in the development and validation of the Oncotype assay and other prognostic/predictive assays?  (more…)
Author Interviews, NYU, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Rheumatology / 21.01.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Peter Izmirly, M.D. Associate Professor of Medicine, NYU School of Medicine Director of Inpatient Rheumatology, Bellevue Hospital Center co-Director, NYU-Hospital for Joint Diseases Lupus Clinic Research Office Address: NYU School of Medicine New York, NY 10016  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Knowing how many people have systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is limited, particularly for racial/ethnic subgroups in the United States. Our work provides accurate estimates of who has  (SLE) among the major racial/ethnic groups in the United States and that our estimates for SLE approach the FDA’s definition or a rare disease. (more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Diabetes, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 16.01.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Anath Shalev, M.D. Professor of Medicine Nancy R. and Eugene C. Gwaltney Family Endowed Chair in Juvenile Diabetes Research Director, Comprehensive Diabetes Center University of Alabama at Birmingham Birmingham, AL  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?  What is metformin normally prescribed for? Response: Diabetes has been recognized as one of the major comorbidities associated with higher mortality in the context of the spreading COVID-19 pandemic, but ways to improve outcome in this at-risk population are lacking. Metformin is the most common medication used for type 2 diabetes. In addition, it is sometimes prescribed to people with prediabetes or to women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). (more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Mental Health Research, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Social Issues, UCSF / 15.01.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Jason Nagata, MD, MSc Assistant Professor of Pediatrics University of California, San Francisco San Francisco, California MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Food insecurity is the inability to afford or access nutritionally adequate and safe foods for an active, healthy lifestyle. Rates of food insecurity were projected to rise during the COVID-19 pandemic; however, prior studies had not examined the association between food insufficiency, the most extreme form of food insecurity, and mental health. MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings? Response: Using a large national sample of nearly 64,000 adults, we found that food insufficiency rose from 8.1% to 10.0% during the pandemic. People of color and younger adults had higher risk of food insufficiency. People living in poverty or experiencing recent job loss were at higher risk of food insufficiency. Food insufficiency was associated with symptoms of anxiety, worrying, and depression. Hunger, exhaustion, and worrying about not getting enough food to eat may worsen depression and anxiety symptoms. Receiving food assistance alleviated the relationship between food insufficiency and poor mental health.   (more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, JAMA, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Social Issues, Technology, University of Pennsylvania / 30.12.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Srinath Adusumalli, MD, MSc, FACC Assistant Professor of Clinical Medicine Division of Cardiovascular Medicine| Penn Medicine Lauren A. Eberly, MD, MPH Division of Cardiovascular Medicine, Department of Medicine Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?   Response: The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has uprooted conventional health care delivery for routine ambulatory care, requiring health systems to rapidly adopt telemedicine capabilities. At Penn Medicine, we wanted to ensure that as we developed a new system of telemedical care, we were reaching all of the patients we serve and access to care was maintained. As such, we undertook this study to examine utilization of care as we continued to iterate on and develop our telemedical system of care. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cognitive Issues, Hearing Loss, JAMA, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 23.12.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Ariana M. Stickel, Ph.D. Postdoctoral Scholar Department of Neurosciences University of California, San Diego MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Latinos are projected to have the largest increase in Alzheimer’s disease and related dementia in the coming years, yet we know so little about important risk factors for dementia amongst Latinos. As there has been too little widespread research on diverse Latinos and dementia until recently, we examined the individual and combined relationships of two important risk factors for dementia --hearing impairment and cardiovascular disease risk--in over 9,000 Latinos 45 – 74 years old. Diverse Latinos participated in the study, including Central Americans, Cubans, Dominicans, Mexicans, Puerto Ricans and South Americans residing in the Bronx, NY; Chicago, IL; Miami, FL and San Diego, CA. It is important to study a wide range of Latinos in order to appropriately reflect the diversity of this population. Each participant underwent extensive cardiovascular and diabetes testing, hearing examinations, and cognitive assessments. (more…)
Author Interviews, Geriatrics, Hearing Loss, JAMA, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Social Issues / 10.12.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Nicholas S. Reed, AuD Assistant Professor | Department of Epidemiology Core Faculty  | Cochlear Center for Hearing and Public Health Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: It is known that hearing aid ownership is relatively low in the United States at less than 20% of adults with hearing loss owning and using hearing aids. However, many national estimates of hearing aid ownership are based on data that is over 10 years old. Our team was interested in trying to understand whether ownership in hearing aids had changed over time. We used data from 2011 to 2018 in a nationally representative (United States) observational cohort (The National Health and Aging Trends Study) of Medicare Beneficiaries aged 70 years and older to estimate the change in hearing aid ownership. In our analysis, the proportion of Medicare beneficiaries 70 years and older who reported owning and using their hearing aids increased 23.3% from 2011 to 2018. However, this growth in ownership was not equal across all older adults. For example, while White males saw a 28.7% increase in hearing aid ownership, Black females saw only a 5.8% increase over the same 8-year period. Moreover, adults living at less than 100% federal poverty level actually saw an overall 13.0% decrease in hearing aid ownership while those living at more than 200% federal poverty line saw an overall 30.6% increase.   (more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Infections, JAMA, NYU, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 04.12.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Gbenga Ogedegbe, MD, MPH Dr. Adolph & Margaret Berger Professor of Population Health Director, Division of Health & Behavior Director Center for Healthful Behavior Change Department of Population Health NYU Langone Health NYU School of Medicine MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The background for the study is the disproportionately higher rates of COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths in Blacks and Hispanics compared to Whites in major cities across the country. We asked two questions: 1) are there racial/ethnic differences in COVID-19 outcomes (likelihood of testing positive, hospitalizations, severe illness, and deaths) among patients who receive care at NYU Langone Health? If there are differences, are they explained by comorbidity and neighborhood characteristics (poverty, educational status, employment, housing, proportion of Blacks and Hispanics in communities)? (more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Inflammation, JAMA, Pediatrics, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 30.11.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Ellen H. Lee, MD Incident Command System Surveillance and Epidemiology Section New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene Long Island City, New York  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Published reports of the COVID-19-associated multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) have described higher proportions of cases among Black and Hispanic children. However, case series are limited by the lack of population-level data, which could help provide context for the racial/ethnic distribution of cases described in these reports. The New York City (NYC) Department of Health and Mental Hygiene required reporting of all possible cases of MIS-C among NYC residents, and for cases meeting MIS-C criteria, applied population denominators to calculate MIS-C incidence rates stratified by race/ethnicity. To help characterize the burden of severe COVID-19 disease in NYC, we also calculated COVID-19 hospitalization rates stratified by race/ethnicity. (more…)
Accidents & Violence, Author Interviews, Pediatrics, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 26.11.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. Monika K. Goyal, MD Associate Division Chief, Emergency Medicine Children’s National Hospital Department of Pediatrics, School of Medicine and Health Sciences The George Washington University Washington, District of Columbia MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: There has been growing attention to the disproportionate use of police force in communities of color. Therefore, we sought to investigate whether Black and Hispanic teenagers have higher rates of death due to police shootings when compared to white youth. (more…)
AHA Journals, Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Stanford / 19.11.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Fatima Rodriguez, MD, MPH, FACC, FAHA Assistant Professor, Cardiovascular Medicine Stanford University School of Medicine Palo Alto, CA 94304 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The COVID-19 pandemic has magnified existing racial/ethnic disparities in the United States. The goal of this study was to leverage new data collected from the American Heart Association’s COVID-19 Cardiovascular Disease Registry to understand racial/ethnic differences in presentation and outcomes for hospitalized patients. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cannabis, Ophthalmology, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Social Issues / 09.11.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Joshua Uhr MD Ophthalmologist Philadelphia, PA MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Disparities in American society have been at the forefront of the public consciousness in recent months. As part of the larger discussion about inequality, disparities in health outcomes have received much attention. In light of the renewed recognition that these disparities are stark and widespread, we felt it important to evaluate disparities in our own field, ophthalmology. Previous studies have shown disparate outcomes for individual eye conditions, such as glaucoma, cataract, and retinal detachment. Although the common and relevant endpoint of these is visual impairment, few prior studies have examined disparities in visual impairment more broadly. Our aim was to provide an updated analysis of disparity in visual impairment among adults in the United States based on race and socioeconomic status.  (more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Rheumatology, UCSF / 07.11.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Milena Gianfrancesco, PhD, MPH Assistant Professor. Education Division of Rheumatology, Department of Medicine University of California, San Francisco MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: This study utilized data from the COVID-19 Global Rheumatology Alliance Provider Survey, which launched on March 25th. To date, it has collected information on over 6,000 patients with rheumatic disease diagnosed with COVID-19 from over 40 countries worldwide. As COVID-19 spread across the world in the spring, and especially within the United States, it became clear that the disease was impacting certain groups more than others. Growing attention and research began to illustrate the disproportionate burden of COVID-19 among racial/ethnic minorities in the United States. We know that racial and ethnic minorities experience a higher burden of rheumatic disease risk and severity; therefore, our group was interested in examining whether the disproportionate burden of COVID-19 also affected this susceptible population. (more…)
Author Interviews, Electronic Records, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Social Issues / 22.09.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Hailey Miller, PhD, RN Postdoctoral Associate Duke University School of Nursing Stephen P. Juraschek, MD PhD Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?   Response: Digital tools, such as the electronic medical record (EMR), are increasingly utilized to identify and recruit participants for clinical trials. These strategies offer a strong opportunity to increase recruitment yields, however, our previous work has demonstrated that patient portal users are disproportionately White, and therefore utilizing these strategies may contribute to the under-representation of Black Americans in clinical research. This study examined multiple recruitment strategies, including EMR-based strategies and other non-EMR strategies, such as community mailing, Facebook advertisement and newspaper advertisement, to understand if recruitment strategies influenced the demographic composition of trial participants. Given our previous finding that patient portal users are disproportionately White, one of our EMR-based strategies included postal mailing to individuals without a patient portal. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, ESMO, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Social Issues / 21.09.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Ziad Bakouny, MD, MSc Post-doctoral research fellow Lank Center for Genitourinary Oncology Dana-Farber Cancer Institute MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The COVID-19 pandemic has disproportionately affected patients with cancer, with these patients unfortunately having worse outcomes than the general population. In fact, a recent report by the COVID-19 and Cancer Consortium (CCC19) showed that the mortality rate in patients with cancer who develop COVID-19, at 30 days median follow-up, was 16%. Although the adverse outcomes of patients with cancer who develop COVID-19 has received much attention, few studies have thus far investigated the effects of the potential disruption to cancer care delivery caused by the pandemic. Our aim in the COVID and Cancer Outcomes Study (CCOS) was therefore to evaluate this disruption to cancer care caused by the pandemic. This is a multicenter prospective cohort study that included patients seen in the outpatient setting at the Tisch Cancer Institute, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City and the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston during one week in March (between March 2 and March 6 2020). Data was collected 3 months before this index week and 3 months prospectively (during the first peak of the pandemic in the Northeastern United States). (more…)
AHA Journals, Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, NYU, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 16.09.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Aisha T. Langford, PhD, MPH Assistant Professor Department of Population Health Co-Director, CTSI Recruitment and Retention Core NYU Grossman School of Medicine NYU Langone Health New York, NY 10016 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: In 2018, the American Heart Association (AHA) published an updated Scientific Statement on Resistant Hypertension. The term apparent treatment-resistant hypertension (aTRH) is used when pseudoresistance (e.g., white coat effect, medication nonadherence) cannot be excluded. The current study was designed to investigate if Black adults with aTRH, a group disproportionately affected by cardiovascular disease, receive evidence-based approaches to lower blood pressure as recommended in the 2018 AHA Scientific Statement. Specifically, we studied healthy lifestyle factors including not smoking, not consuming alcohol, ≥75 minutes of vigorous-intensity or ≥150 minutes of moderate or vigorous physical activity per week, and body mass index <25 kg/m2; and recommended antihypertensive medication classes among US Black adults. (more…)
Accidents & Violence, Author Interviews, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 21.08.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Ashwini Sehgal, MD Professor, Department of Medicine, School of Medicine Professor, Department of Bioethics, School of Medicine Professor, Department of Population and Quantitative Health Sciences, School of Medicine Director and Duncan Neuhauser Professor of Community Health Improvement, Center for Reducing Health Disparities, Case Western School of Medicine  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: News media and politicians frequently discuss the high toll of deaths from firearms and drug overdoses. They usually mention the numbers of deaths, citing figures like 40,000 firearm deaths last year, or death rates such as 20 overdose deaths per 100,000 population. But for most people, it's hard to grasp the real meaning of both the large absolute numbers and the small annual rates.  So in a new study published in the American Journal of Medicine, I used official death certificate data to calculate the chance that an American child will die from a gunshot or a drug overdose over the course of a lifetime. (more…)
Author Interviews, Pediatrics, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 19.08.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Anura Ratnasiri PhD Senior Research Scientist (Epidemiology and Biostatistics) Benefits Division Department of Health Care Services Sacramento, CA 95899-7417 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Infant mortality rate (IMR) is a widely-reported indicator of population health and is used as a standardized measurement of deaths in the first year of life per thousand live births. While IMR has been steadily declining in the United States, it remains relatively high compared with other developed countries. Even though significant improvements have been made in the quality and access to neonatal and infant care during the past decade, large educational, socioeconomic, racial, ethnic, geographic and behavioral disparities persist, and appear to be responsible for significant differences in IMR among different subgroups. Certain maternal and infant characteristics have important associations with IMR, and this study attempted to quantify major maternal and infant predictors, and trace associated mortality trends during the study period. There were no recent studies on infant mortality using a large data set such as California State. Moreover, gestational age based on obstetric estimates from fetal ultrasound, prepregnancy obesity, and smoking during pregnancy were not available in prior population-based studies in California. (more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, JAMA, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 17.08.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Pinar Karaca-Mandic, PhD Professor, Finance Department Arthur Williams Jr. Professor of Healthcare Risk Management Academic Director, Medical Industry Leadership Institute (MILI) Carlson School of Management University of Minnesota MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Several studies have highlighted disparities in COVID-19 infection rates and deaths. Less is known about disparities in hospitalizations. Reports from the Centers for Disease Control showed that in the nation overall, non-Hispanic Blacks, Hispanics and American Indian Alaska Native persons have substantially higher rates of COVID-19 hospitalization. Our study extends this work by providing a state-by-state analysis of race/ethnic prevalence of cumulative COVID-19 hospitalizations and comparing this prevalence to ethnic/racial composition of each state’s population. Through our University of Minnesota Covid-19 hospitalization tracking project (https://carlsonschool.umn.edu/mili-misrc-covid19-tracking-project) we collect data every day from state department of health websites, and we started collecting information on race/ethnicity breakdown of the hospitalizations as soon as states started reporting such data. During our study period, between April 30 and June 24, 12 states reported cumulative hospitalizations by race/ethnicity. By the end of our study, our data from these 12 states represented almost 50,000 hospitalizations.  (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Exercise - Fitness, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Social Issues / 03.08.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Marc Weisskopf, PhD, ScD Cecil K. and Philip Drinker Professor of Environmental Epidemiology and Physiology Departments of Environmental Health and Epidemiology Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health Boston, MA 02115  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: There is a long history of health disparities by race. We were interested to see whether these also show up in professional football players, with the thought that perhaps the advantages that come with being an elite athlete in a sport (e.g. related to income, potential access to carte, prestige) might minimize health disparities. (more…)
Author Interviews, JAMA, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Social Issues / 03.08.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Nasim B. Ferdows, Ph.D. Assistant Professor, Department of Health Administration and Policy Hudson College of Public Health The University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center Oklahoma City, OK MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: This half a century study of US senior men and women who died between 1968 and 2016 shows how disparities in the Black and White mortality of older US citizens have changed over time, as well as how the racial disparities differ in rural, suburban and urban areas. (more…)
Author Interviews, CDC, Diabetes, Gender Differences, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 29.06.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Giuseppina Imperatore, MD, PHD CDC, Atlanta MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The lifetime risk of diabetes (LRD), a probability of developing diabetes during a person’s lifespan, is a measure of future disease burden that reflects the impact of incidence (occurrence of new cases per year) and mortality. The years of potential life lost to diabetes (YPLLD) is the number of life-years lost due to diabetes, calculated as the difference between the life expectancy of a person without diabetes and a person with diabetes at the age of diagnosis. For example, the number of life-years lost for a person diagnosed at age 20 years is the difference in life expectancy of a person who died without developing diabetes and a person who was diagnosed with diabetes at 20 years of age.  Both incidence and mortality of diabetes have been decreasing for more than a decade. The effects of those changes on lifetime risk of diabetes and years of potential life lost to diabetes are not known. In this study, we used nationally representative diabetes surveillance data to provide updated estimates for the lifetime probability of development of diabetes, and to assess changes in incidence and mortality on lifetime risk and life-years lost due to diabetes in the USA. (more…)