Black women diagnosed with breast cancer in metro Atlanta are 44% more likely to die of the disease than White women. That’s according to the most recent study by the Avon Foundation for Women, on the Black:White disparities in breast cancer mortality in the 50 largest cities in the United States between 2005 and 2014. The study showed that the disparity in breast cancer death rates between black and white women was greater in Atlanta than in any other major US city. Approximately two African American women are diagnosed each day with breast cancer in metro Atlanta. African American women are more likely to present with more advanced disease, higher grade tumor, and triple negative breast cancer. These factors negatively impact long term prognosis. The Avon Foundation for Women released a study in 2016 on the Black:White disparities in breast cancer mortality in the 50 largest cities in the United States between 2005 and 2014.
In response to this, a group of physicians and community members from across the Atlanta area gathered for an interactive forum to learn more about breast cancer disparity in Atlanta and explore potential solutions. The forum was sponsored by Sisters by Choice. Out of this forum, The Greater Atlanta Breast Cancer Task Force was developed. The Task Force’s Mission is to bring awareness to the public that breast cancer disparity exists in Atlanta and to eliminate this disparity by bringing together a collaborative group (community agencies, government agencies, academic and religious institutions, health care companies, and health care providers) to provide education, decrease barriers to access to care, provide access to quality mammography services, and to establish effective navigation programs. Representatives from Sisters by Choice, Komen Atlanta, the Avon Comprehensive Breast Center at Grady, Emory Winship Cancer Institute, Wellstar, Northside, Piedmont, and many more have come together to form the Greater Atlanta Breast Cancer Task Force. Our goal is to save women’s lives by working to eliminate disparities in breast cancer care!
In addition, there is data showing differences in treatment by race, insurance status, and education. Delays in seeking care due to fears of breast cancer diagnosis or concern about the cost of care may have contributed to increasing disparities.
Any uninsured, low-income (family income not greater than 200% of the federal poverty level) woman who has been diagnosed with breast or cervical cancer should go to the county health department in her county of residence. Information regarding the program can also be obtained from the Georgia Screening and Treatment Unit by email firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone 404-657-7735404-657-7735 or visit www.health.state.ga.us.