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Racial and ethnic minorities face worse health and health care disparities—but some interventions have made a difference

America’s racial and ethnic minorities have worse health than whites do, and they often receive a lesser standard of health care. People who have limited education or income, or who live in poor neighborhoods, have worse health and health care compared to those who are better educated or financially better off. People with disabilities are also in worse health, and receive worse health care, compared to people without disabilities. Narrowing these disparities in health and health care has been the goal of many public and private efforts since the early 1990s. Although some progress has been made—particularly in closing the quality gap in the care that minorities and whites receive—much more remains to be done.

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