Improving access to care lowers prostate cancer rates in blacks

NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted March 26, 2007

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Decreasing the rates of prostate cancer among African-American men may require improving access to routine health care, rather than increasing education about the disease, according to a study in the March 12 online edition of Cancer, the journal of the American Cancer Society.

"African-American men were aware of their increased risk of prostate cancer, and they felt responsible for getting themselves to physicians for preventive care. But there were substantial barriers to them carrying out what they saw as being important," said Paul Godley, MD, PhD, the study's senior author.

He also is an associate professor of hematology and oncology at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine.

The men surveyed reported getting their care at public clinics or emergency departments rather than at a private physician's office. "If you don't have a doctor and have to repeat your whole history to an emergency room physician every time you have a medical encounter, then it's harder to develop trust in physicians," Dr. Godley said.

Note: This item originally appeared at

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