Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Minority health-care clinics separate but unequal

11.02.2009
New study evaluates role of clinic environment in health-care disparities

A study published today in the Archives of Internal Medicine may shed new light on why minority Americans have poorer health outcomes from chronic conditions such as hypertension, heart disease and diabetes.

Researchers found that clinics serving higher proportions of these minority patients tend to have more challenging work environments and organizational characteristics.

"Unfavorable patient and physician outcomes may be attributable to disparities in work conditions at these clinics," said Anita Varkey, MD, lead author, assistant professor in the department of medicine, Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine and medical director of general medicine at Loyola Outpatient Center, Loyola University Health System. "When you have limited access to medical supplies, referral specialists, and examination rooms, coupled with a more complex patient mix, you can start to see the challenges involved with providing high quality primary care."

Few studies have examined the influence of physician workplace conditions on health care disparities. This study compared 96 primary care clinics in five regions, including Chicago. Data were collected from 388 primary care physicians and 1,701 adult patients with chronic diseases. Researchers compared 27 clinics (41.8 percent of physicians) that had at least 30 percent minority patients with 69 clinics (45.9 percent of physicians) that had less than 30 percent. The clinics with larger proportions of minority patients were four times more likely to have a chaotic work environment, and their physicians were half as likely to report job satisfaction. These physicians also had a tendency to report higher stress and intention to leave.

"All of these factors can contribute to health care disparities," said Varkey. "Challenges in workplace characteristics exacerbate time pressures already complicated by disadvantaged patients with chronic medical and psychosocial issues."

Patients in clinics with higher proportions of minorities were more frequently depressed (22.8 percent vs. 12.1 percent), more often covered by Medicaid (30.2 percent vs. 11.4 percent), and had lower health literacy (3.7 vs. 4.4, on a scale where one is lowest and five is highest). Physicians from these clinics reported that more of their patients spoke little to no English (27.1 percent vs. 3. 4 percent), had more chronic pain (24.1 percent vs. 12.9 percent), substance abuse problems (15.1 percent vs. 10.1 percent), and complex medical cases.

The authors indicated that strategies to improve patient care for these clinics should go beyond efforts to improve health care coverage and reimbursement. Interventions also should target measures to reduce physician burnout, clinic chaos and work control measures.

"While further research is needed, health care reform strategies should consider the role that work environment plays in quality of care," said Varkey.

Nora Plunkett | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.lumc.edu

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Europe’s Demographic Future. Where the Regions Are Heading after a Decade of Crises
10.08.2017 | Berlin-Institut für Bevölkerung und Entwicklung

nachricht Scientists reveal source of human heartbeat in 3-D
07.08.2017 | University of Manchester

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Fizzy soda water could be key to clean manufacture of flat wonder material: Graphene

Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.

As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...

Im Focus: Exotic quantum states made from light: Physicists create optical “wells” for a super-photon

Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.

Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...

Im Focus: Circular RNA linked to brain function

For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.

While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...

Im Focus: RAVAN CubeSat measures Earth's outgoing energy

An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.

The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...

Im Focus: Scientists shine new light on the “other high temperature superconductor”

A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.

Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Call for Papers – ICNFT 2018, 5th International Conference on New Forming Technology

16.08.2017 | Event News

Sustainability is the business model of tomorrow

04.08.2017 | Event News

Clash of Realities 2017: Registration now open. International Conference at TH Köln

26.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Cholesterol-lowering drugs may fight infectious disease

22.08.2017 | Health and Medicine

Meter-sized single-crystal graphene growth becomes possible

22.08.2017 | Materials Sciences

Repairing damaged hearts with self-healing heart cells

22.08.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>