Race and ethnicity are associated with delays in breast cancer treatment (2003-2006)

Stacey A. Fedewa, Stephen B. Edge, Andrew K. Stewart, Michael T. Halpern, Nicole M. Marlow, Elizabeth M. Ward

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

77 Scopus citations


Access to timely treatment may be one contributing factor to survival differences by race/ethnicity among breast cancer patients. In this study, we examined the relationship between race and treatment delay among breast cancer patients diagnosed between 2003 and 2006 with Stage I-III breast cancer from the National Cancer Database (n5250,007).\ We evaluated factors associated with receipt of initial treatment more than 30, 60, and 90 days after biopsy using multivariable log binomial models to estimate risk ratios (RR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI). The average time to treatment was 34.30 days (±31.77). Independent of health insurance, stage at diagnosis, and age, Black and Hispanic patients had higher risks of 30, 60, and 90-day treatment delay compared with White patients. Further studies are needed to define the role of structural, health system, physician, clinical and patient factors in treatment delay among Black and Hispanic women and appropriate interventions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)128-141
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of health care for the poor and underserved
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Breast cancer
  • Health insurance
  • Race/ethnicity
  • Treatment delays

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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