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      What are Health Disparities and Health Equity? We Need to Be Clear

      Public Health Reports

      SAGE Publications

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          Most cited references 7

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          Defining equity in health

           P Braveman (2003)
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            Health disparities and health equity: the issue is justice.

            Eliminating health disparities is a Healthy People goal. Given the diverse and sometimes broad definitions of health disparities commonly used, a subcommittee convened by the Secretary's Advisory Committee for Healthy People 2020 proposed an operational definition for use in developing objectives and targets, determining resource allocation priorities, and assessing progress. Based on that subcommittee's work, we propose that health disparities are systematic, plausibly avoidable health differences adversely affecting socially disadvantaged groups; they may reflect social disadvantage, but causality need not be established. This definition, grounded in ethical and human rights principles, focuses on the subset of health differences reflecting social injustice, distinguishing health disparities from other health differences also warranting concerted attention, and from health differences in general. We explain the definition, its underlying concepts, the challenges it addresses, and the rationale for applying it to United States public health policy.
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              Racial Residential Segregation: A Fundamental Cause of Racial Disparities in Health

               D R Williams (2001)
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Public Health Reports
                Public Health Rep
                SAGE Publications
                0033-3549
                1468-2877
                January 2014
                January 2014
                : 129
                : 1_suppl2
                : 5-8
                Article
                10.1177/00333549141291S203
                © 2014

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