Will Healthcare Reform Eliminate Racial Disparities in Cardiac Care?

A new study by researchers at Harvard Medical School and the Howard University College of Medicine finds that healthcare reform in Massachusetts, which has many similarities to the federal Affordable Care Act (a.k.a. Obamacare), has not reduced racial disparities in cardiovascular care.

The study found that in Massachusetts Blacks are 30 percent less likely than Whites to receive coronary revascularization, about the same percentage that existed prior to healthcare reform in the state.

Michelle A. Albert, the Vivian Beaumont Allen Endowed Professor and chief of cardiovascular medicine and research at Howard University, and the lead author of the study, stated: “Despite healthcare reform, which mandates individual health insurance coverage in Massachusetts, disparities persist in an important area of cardiac care, such as performance of potentially life-saving coronary interventions in certain vulnerable groups, including Blacks, Hispanics, and women.

The study, “Early Results of Massachusetts Healthcare Reform on Racial, Ethnic, and Socioeconomic Disparities in Cardiovascular Care,” was published in the June 17, 2014 issue of the journal Circulation, a publication of the American Heart Association. It may be accessed here.

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