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Diversity and Disparities in Lung Cancer Outcomes Among Minorities.

Cancer Journal 2023 November
Because of diversities and disparities, lung cancer incidence and mortality rates among minorities are disproportionate compared with non-Hispanic White (NHW) populations. This review focuses on the disparities in lung cancer screening, diagnosis, treatment, and outcomes that minorities, mainly Hispanic and Black, experience compared with NHW populations. Despite efforts such as improving the eligibility criteria for screening to improve lung cancer survival rates, disparities persist, particularly among minority populations. However, the "Hispanic Paradox" describes the lower incidence and better survival rates observed in Hispanics compared with other ethnic groups best explained by possible contributions such as genetics and other factors such as dietary habits. Disparities in screening, particularly among underrepresented populations, are frequently explained by cultural, socioeconomic, and health care access barriers. There are also disparities in receiving appropriate treatment, such as surgical treatment, with fewer Hispanics and Blacks undergoing surgery than NHW individuals, resulting in lower overall survival rates. In addition, the prevalence of biomarker testing varies by racial and ethnic groups, influencing personalized treatment plans and outcomes. Finally, because of genetic and social determinants of health, the clinical outcomes of targeted therapy and immunotherapy may differ among minority populations. Identifying and addressing social determinants of health in real time are a "must" to have a significant impact in reducing lung cancer disparities. A comprehensive and multifaceted strategy is required to rectify disparities in cancer treatment. This strategy includes increasing levels of awareness and education, reducing financial and access barriers, and promoting increased diversity in clinical trial recruitment. By effectively addressing these complex challenges, the objective of providing equitable cancer care to all patients, regardless of race or ethnicity, can be achieved. To identify and address disparities, heightened awareness and education are essential. Access to health care is ensured by reducing financial and access barriers. Finally, increased diversity in clinical trial recruitment advances the generalizability of findings and promotes equitable representation of all racial and ethnic groups, resulting in improved outcomes for all patients.

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