Continued advances in health care, medical technology and a longer average life span have benefited most Americans. However, the benefits haven’t come to all groups equally. Racial and ethnic minorities in the United States experience higher rates of disease, disability and premature death than non-minorities. These health gaps for socially disadvantaged populations are called health disparities. Poverty, unequal access to health care, poor environmental conditions, educational inequalities, individual behaviors and language barriers all contribute to the disparities.
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