The Breast Cancer, Race and Place Study

Authors: Kirsten Beyer*, Medical College of Wisconsin
Topics: Medical and Health Geography, Spatial Analysis & Modeling, Geography and Urban Health
Keywords: racial segregation; breast cancer; housing
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/5/2019
Start / End Time: 9:55 AM / 11:35 AM
Room: Marshall West, Marriott, Mezzanine Level
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


Racial disparities in breast cancer survival are significant, with only 68% of US Black women diagnosed with breast cancer remaining alive 10 years post-diagnosis, compared to 84% of White women. However, the size of the racial disparity in breast cancer mortality varies geographically across the US, from no observable state-level disparity between Black and White women in Minnesota and Massachusetts, to a mortality rate ratio of over 1.60 in Mississippi, Louisiana, and Wisconsin. Such geographical variation suggests that disparities are not inevitable and may be related to characteristics of places. Housing discrimination and racial residential segregation are widely considered to contribute to health disparities, and may partially explain geographical variation in the size of this disparity. However, while some studies have shown that segregation is related to poor survival, others have found that this is not always the case, and some studies highlight the case of ethnic enclaves, which may be protective. In the Breast Cancer, Race and Place study, we examine (1) differences among measures of housing discrimination, racial segregation, and racial composition, (2) associations among housing discrimination, racial segregation, racial composition and breast cancer survival disparities, and (3) local (Milwaukee, WI) experiences of women diagnosed with breast cancer navigating survivorship in the context of racial segregation. The project team, supported by a community advisory board, seeks to contribute to the development of future multi-sectoral interventions to reduce cancer disparities by targeting local systems and policies, with a focus on the intersection of race and place.

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