top of page

Social media management made easy!

The Color Of Health

By: Kelley Rosario

Breast health is a growing concern among women. After skin, breast cancer is the most common cancer diagnosis among middle-aged females. The risk for developing the illness extends across all races, but one group is at the greatest risk of mortality.

Black women are 40% more likely than their White counterparts to die from breast cancer. As the racial disparity has become common knowledge, many people assume that the primary cause is lack of adequate health insurance; this is only partially true. After all, more than 11% of non-elderly Black people are uninsured compared to only 8% of Whites and the extent to which states make possible universal access to high-quality healthcare varies. However, recent reports have further clarified that Black women are more likely to develop a specific subtype of breast cancer: HR-negative. This variant is less likely to be detected by mammograms or targeted by adjuvant endocrine therapy. It also tends to be more aggressive, affect younger women, and display few symptoms if any. In other words, early intervention for women with this subtype is unlikely.

Although the disparity is troubling, it is difficult to solicit the kind of legislation or advances in diagnostic technology that can adequately address the gap. While we wait, our focus must be on one critical area: education. Hosea 4:6 reminds us that the consequence for a lack of knowledge is destruction. Learning our risk factors is vital to timely detection, but we are also charged with learning about the different subtypes of breast cancer, their symptoms, and any steps we can take toward prevention.

Ultimately, the racial gap in the early diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer in women highlights a discouraging trend in our country: women of color are overlooked, undertreated, and at a higher risk of death. The push for change continues, but as we come to know better, we can do better.


Jatoi, M.D., Ph.D., I., Sund, Ph.D., H., & Jamal, D.V.M., Ph.D., A. (2022, June 18). The emergence of the racial disparity in U.S. breast-cancer mortality | NEJM. New England Journal of Medicine.


bottom of page