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Black Women And Breast Cancer: The Trouble With Treatment

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  Is the high cost of health care keeping black women from following up on breast cancer treatment? A new study in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute reveals black women are less likely to adhere to breast cancer follow-up treatments.

One of the reasons appears to be financial. Stephanie Wheeler, UNC-Chapel Hill professor of health policy and management and lead author of this study, followed almost 1,300 North Carolina women diagnosed with breast cancer between 2008 and 2013. The research revealed that black women were more likely to skip doses or have gaps in taking their medication. The rate of non-adherence for black women was 14 percent compared to white women at 5 percent. Host Frank Stasio talks with Wheeler about her findings and the possible causes. He also talks to medical oncologist Dr. Doris Browne of Browne and Associates. A retired leader from the National Cancer Institute, Browne speaks to the complexities of treating African-American patients.

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