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Editorial
August 2013

Pediatric Stroke, Health Disparities, and Biological Differences in Disease Pathophysiology

Author Affiliations
  • 1Division of Child Neurology, Department of Neurology, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, Tennessee
  • 2Vanderbilt-Meharry Center for Excellence in Sickle Cell Disease, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, Tennessee
JAMA Pediatr. 2013;167(8):695-697. doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2013.362

Health disparity is defined by the Institute of Medicine as racial or ethnic differences in the quality of health care that are caused by factors other than access or differences in clinical need, patient preferences, or appropriateness.1 Research in health disparities has become an emerging area of investigation and resource allocation, leading to the creation of new academic divisions, institutes, and individual centers at major research-intensive medical centers. Despite the academic focus on eliminating health care disparities, limited advancement has been made in decreasing the rate of health care disparities in pediatrics, particularly as it relates to the major causes of morbidity and mortality in children, such as the premature birth rate2 and asthma.3

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