Blacks and Asians wait longer for cancer diagnosis, a new study finds

Blacks and Asians wait longer for cancer diagnosis, a new study finds

Blacks and Asians wait longer for cancer diagnosis, a new study finds

University of Exeter study analyzed wait times for diagnosis of seven cancers, including breast and prostate (PA)

University of Exeter study analyzed wait times for diagnosis of seven cancers, including breast and prostate (PA)

According to a new analysis, blacks and Asians wait up to six weeks longer for a cancer diagnosis than whites.

New research conducted by the University of Exeter, supported by Cancer Research UK and reported in The Guardianlooked at waiting times for seven different types of cancer.

The study analyzed over 126,000 cases over a decade and found that the average time to diagnosis for whites was 55 days. Blacks waited 61 days (11% longer), while Asians waited an average of 60 days (9% longer) since they first saw their GP.

Overall, the research found that minority groups waited longer to be diagnosed with a range of cancers including breast, prostate and colorectal cancers.

One of the most alarming findings was the disparity in diagnosing cancers affecting the esophagus or stomach, according to which Asians waited an average of 100 days, more than six weeks longer than 53 days for white patients.

The review does not give reasons why waiting times differ for different races.

Jabeer Butt, chief executive of Race Equality Foundation, told al Guardian the results were “deeply troubling, with potential life-altering consequences for the health of blacks and Asians.”

“We urgently need to address these underlying factors that prevent black and Asian patients from having a fair chance when it comes to fighting cancer.”

The longest average waiting time for breast cancer diagnosis in white women was found to be 43 days, compared to 56 days for Asian people and 73 days for black people.

The researchers concluded that while efforts to improve awareness of breast cancer signs and symptoms and the need for screening, “this finding suggests the need for further exploration of black women’s pathways to diagnosing symptomatic breast cancer. “.

Cancer affecting the prostate was found to take longer to diagnose in black and Asian men than in white men, averaging seven and 13 days, respectively.

The researchers attributed this to inequalities in primary care services, warning that family physicians’ interpretations of symptoms could lead to delays. It comes after the development of a new genetic blood test aimed at improving early detection of prostate cancer in black men, who are twice as likely to develop and die from the disease than white men.

Colorectal cancers have also been found to have unequal timing to diagnosis, with blacks waiting an average of 14 days longer and Asians waiting 24 days compared to whites.

Further analyzes carried out by Guardian they also found an average 37% increase in wait times for the diagnosis of myeloma – cancer of the blood – in blacks and Asians.

Lead researcher Tanimola Martins said highlighting the disparities “will help improve trust and care experiences among ethnic minority groups.”

“Although more studies are needed, the results of this study improve our understanding and will help focus interventions to minimize ethnic inequalities.”

Martins added that more needs to be done to improve the uptake of cancer screening among minority groups.

“We urgently need to understand why this is the case with black and Asian groups,” he said.

The study comes as the government is developing a ten-year cancer plan aimed at improving and treating cancer, including priorities to “address disparities and inequalities.”

Following an extension of his consultation on the plan, Sajid Javid, then Secretary of Health and Social Care, said: “My father died of cancer and he wished he had taken the early signs much more seriously.

“But unfortunately for him, like so many people from ethnic minority communities, it was detected too late.

“We are extending the demand for cancer testing to inform our 10-year cancer plan to better understand why people don’t come forward.”

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