Health Disparities

Asthma disproportionately affects youth of certain ethnic minorities, in urban communities, and of low-income populations (Federico and Liu 2003). Recent research underscores the complexity of the genetics of asthma and indicates that certain subgroups of ethnic minorities (e.g., African Americans, Puerto Ricans) have greater risk for asthma onset (Hunninghake et al. 2006). Individuals in urban communities and low-income populations may experience higher levels of exposure to indoor and outdoor allergens and poor access to health care services (Rosenstreich et al. 1997). Ethnic minorities have higher observed rates of asthma, more frequent health care utilization, poorer quality of care, and more fatalities than European Americans (Inke-las et al. 2008; Lozano et al. 1995). African American youth with asthma are at increased risk of emergency health care use and death (Akinbami 2007). More poorly controlled symptoms have been identified among Puerto Ricans (Canino et al. 2006). Al though some researchers caution that the disproportionate impact of asthma on ethnic minorities may reflect health disparities associated with poverty and urban communities, higher asthma rates and risks have been identified among ethnic minorities after controlling for these factors (Joseph et al. 2000).

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Dealing With Asthma Naturally

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