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Discrimination Associated With Health Problems


African-Americans who experience racial discrimination have worse physical and mental health problems than others, concludes a new study from Columbia University.

“Our study shows that perceived discrimination was associated with worse physical and mental health, a finding that persisted after adjusting for age, education and income,” says principal investigator Dr. Luisa Borrell, of the Mailman School of Public Health’s Department of Epidemiology.

The study, published in the journal Social Science & Medicine, was conducted in collaboration with the Universities of Alabama, Michigan and North Carolina. Self-reported racial discrimination was slightly more common in men than in women (78 percent versus 73 percent).

Those with high educational attainment, regardless of gender, were more likely to report experiencing discrimination in day-to-day events like getting a job, housing or medical care. Low-income Black women reported more health problems than their higher income counterparts.

The findings are based on interviews of 1,722 self-identified Black people, aged 33 to 45, from Chicago; Birmingham, Ala.; Minneapolis and Oakland, Calif.

— Diverse reports


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