Such differences in health care are claiming Latino lives, according to research published in the monthly journal JAMA Oncology of the American Medical Association.
“Despite great advances in cancer detection, education and treatment, there are populations in the United States that have not benefited equally from these improvements,” said study lead author Sophia Kamran.
The discovery of declining cancer deaths among the Hispanic population might have been cause for celebration for researchers at the Massachusetts General Cancer Center, but it was the increased death rates from certain types of cancer that caught their attention.
The study published in JAMA Oncology found that between 1999 and 2020, overall cancer mortality among the Hispanic population decreased by 1.3% per year. While deaths from certain types of cancer such as liver or cervical cancer increased in Hispanic men and women. Liver cancer death rates among Hispanic men “increased significantly” by 1% per year.
Hispanic women experienced an annual increase in deaths from liver cancer (1%), pancreatic cancer (0.2%), and uterine cancer (1.6%).
Latinos also face daunting policies regarding enrollment in public health insurance. Unequal treatment in health care facilities has also had a negative effect on their physical and mental health.
In a survey of Pew Research Center, 48% of participating Latinos said poor access to quality health care was another problem. Language and cultural differences also make navigating the healthcare system a challenge for 44% of those surveyed.