Online Program

Racial disparities in prostate cancer mortality in the 50 biggest US cities

Wednesday, November 4, 2015 : 10:30 a.m. - 10:50 a.m.

Maureen Benjamins, PhD, Sinai Urban Health Institute, Chicago, IL
Bijou Hunt, MA, Sinai Urban Health Institute, Sinai Health System, Chicago, IL
Sarah Raleigh, BA, Chicago Medical School, Rosalind Franklin University, North Chicago, IL
City-level analyses of racial disparities in prostate cancer mortality will allow public health officials and primary care providers to provide more targeted interventions for this highly prevalent cancer. We calculated age-adjusted mortality rates and corresponding rate ratios (RRs) for non-Hispanic Blacks and non-Hispanic Whites, in the 50 largest US cities using twenty years of the most recent data from Vital Statistics and the Census.

Consistent with previous data, Black mortality rates were higher than Whites at all time points. At the first time point (1990-1994), 40 out of the 42 analyzed cities had significant RRs >1, indicating higher mortality for Blacks compared to Whites. Similarly, at the final time point (2005-2009), 38 out of 42 cities had RRs that showed significantly higher mortality for Blacks. However, the extent of the racial disparities varied widely among cities.  For example, the largest cities, like New York and Los Angeles, had RRs of 2.75 and 3.24, respectively, indicating the Black mortality rates were approximately 3 times as high as the White rates.  However, other cities, such as Minneapolis had Black and White mortality rates that were statistically equivalent.  Over the twenty year period, RRs rose in 26 out of 42 cities.  We also calculated the number of excess Black deaths during the most recent period.  Across the US, an additional 2,820 Black men died from prostate cancer than would have if their mortality rate were equal to the White rate.  Cities with the most excess deaths included New York City and Chicago with 172 and 109 excess deaths, respectively. 

These data indicate that racial disparities in prostate cancer mortality remain prevalent, but vary greatly between cities in the US with the largest cities showing the greatest gap between Blacks and Whites.  Furthermore, most cities’ RRs increased, suggesting a racial gap that is widening, rather than closing. Cities with the largest RRs, especially those showing increasing disparities over time, must intensify efforts to address access to care and screening at the community level.

Learning Areas:

Diversity and culture
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Assess racial disparities in mortality rates of men with prostate cancer across the 50 largest US cities over the past twenty years.

Keyword(s): Health Disparities/Inequities, Urban Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a medical student at Chicago Medical School. My mentor is Dr. Maureen Benjamins, the Director of Sinai Urban Health Institute, who has over 10 years of experience with health disparities and mortality rates pertaining to race and other social factors. My research interests include urban health and racial disparities.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.