Health inequities (also called disparities) refer to population differences in health outcomes, such as a higher burden of disease, disability, and death, that result from social disadvantage. Population groups affected by health inequities are commonly referred to as disenfranchised (or vulnerable) populations. For example, vulnerable populations in the United States tend to experience a higher burden of cancer, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes. The causes of poorer health outcomes in vulnerable populations are complex. Although every population group is heterogeneous, members of vulnerable populations are more likely to experience reduced access to health care, discrimination, and lower socioeconomic status as compared to members of more socially advantaged groups. There are various ways to classify vulnerable populations, but the majority of health disparities research has focused ...

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