Older minority cancer patients experience worse surgical outcomes compared to white patients with similar socioeconomic factors

Timothy Pawlik, MD Researchers at The Ohio State University College of Medicine and Comprehensive Cancer Center – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute (OSUCCC – James) have discovered that older minority cancer patients with poor social determinants of health had a 40% increased risk of developing a complication and a 23% increased risk of 90-day mortality following surgery when compared to white patients with similar risk factors.

"Ultimately, the resources in the patient’s community may be as important to a patient’s health as what goes on in the hospital,” says Timothy Pawlik, MD, senior author of the study and holder of the Urban Meyer III and Shelley Meyer Chair for Cancer Research at the OSUCCC – James, surgeon-in-chief at the Ohio State Wexner Medical Center, and chair of the Department of Surgery at the Ohio State College of Medicine.” We need to “address systemic health-related disparities within the communities in which patients live.”

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