Closing the Cancer Gap in Black and African American Communities
World Cancer Day (WCD) is recognized every February 4th. This year’s campaign is Close the Care Gap, which is meant to understand and recognize the inequities in cancer care all over the world. WCD is a global initiative led by the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) meant to raise worldwide awareness and improve education. The UICC’s goal is to be the catalyst in personal, collective, and governmental change to prevent cancer deaths and increase access to cancer treatment
I find it fitting to discuss the differences in cancer rates specifically in the Black community because February is Black History Month. The focus this year is Black Health and Wellness. According to the American Cancer Society, African Americans have the highest death rate and shortest survival of any racial/ethnic group for most cancers. In Black men, prostate cancer death rates are more than double than any other racial or ethnic group. Black women are 40% more likely to die of breast cancer than white women.
Listen to Dr. Folakemi Odedina, a prostate cancer scientist and global health equity researcher at Mayo Clinic, in this Q & A podcast. She discusses the factors responsible for health disparities in the Black community and how her work supports all areas of health for Black people. She stresses the importance of clinical trials.