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Introduction: Social Epidemiology and Hierarchies

Mary Anne Mercer, MPH, DrPH, Health Alliance International, 1107 NE 45th Street, Suite 427, Seattle, WA 98105, 206-543-8382, mamercer@u.washington.edu

Over the past few years there has been increasing interest in understanding the basis for social and economic disparities in health. Social epidemiology is now an accepted field of study, and large meetings are convened to debate the mechanisms through which disparities linked to hierarchy affect health status. But general findings are not necessarily useful in shaping a response to specific situations where disparities have identifiable health effects. The session will begin with a general review of the biological mechanisms that link measures of equity and hierarchy with health. The panelists will then examine the mechanisms through which class, race, or other types of hierarchy lead to health disparities in specific populations and settings, and suggest a range of possible responses to their findings.

Learning Objectives:

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

Race, Class, and Hierarchy: A Closer Look at Health Inequalities

The 132nd Annual Meeting (November 6-10, 2004) of APHA