Women in socioeconomically disadvantaged and less affluent areas of Chicago were less likely to live near a mammography facility with various aspects of care compared with women in less socioeconomically disadvantaged and more affluent areas. This finding could be a contributing factor to the association between disadvantaged areas and late-stage breast cancer diagnosis, according to data presented at the Fifth AACR Conference on The Science of Cancer Health Disparities, held here Oct. 27-30, 2012.
"Other research has found that women living in disadvantaged neighborhoods are more likely to be diagnosed with more biologically aggressive forms of breast cancer," said Jenna Khan, M.P.H., a doctoral candidate in epidemiology at the University of Illinois at Chicago Division of Epidemiology and Biostatistics. "The disproportionate lack of access to high-quality screening for these women who may actually need it the most is likely to be contributing to racial and socioeconomic disparities in breast cancer stage at diagnosis and survival."
Khan and colleagues, in collaboration with the Metropolitan Chicago Breast Cancer Task Force, defined an index of social disadvantage from the 2010 census tract data on the percentage of families below the poverty line, families receiving public cash assistance or food stamps, unemployed persons and female-headed households with children.
They created an index of affluence based on the percentage of families with incomes of $100,000 or more, adults with at least a college education and adults with white-collar jobs.