ACC advocates for equal cardiovascular care for women, minorities

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A new paper published by cardiovascular experts advocates for healthcare policy makers to ensure women and minorities receive the same high-quality care that men receive.

The paper, published July 10 in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology (ACC), was written by a women’s committee in the ACC.

“It is precisely when our healthcare system is in a state of restructuring and championing personalized and precision medicine that opportunities exist for a call to action toward patient-centered, effective care of women at risk for or living with cardiovascular disease,” said Leslee Shaw, PhD, lead author of the review paper and a member of the American College of Cardiology Cardiovascular Disease in Women Committee.

The paper outlines the challenges that prevent women and minorities from receiving high-quality and equitable heart healthcare. Nearly 60 million adult women in the U.S. are affected by the issue, and the authors of the paper hope their efforts promote awareness.

They examined socioeconomic disadvantages, including social and cultural determinants of health and disease. Additionally, they looked at how race and ethnicity factor in what kind of care a patient receives. 

“Realistically, full transformation [of the health care system] is unachievable,” Shaw said. “But delineation of the components of necessary, but high-quality health care, including a women-specific research agenda, remains a vital part of strategic planning to improve the lives of women at risk for and living with cardiovascular disease.”