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July 17, 2013

New Incentive-Based Programs: Maryland’s Health Disparities Initiatives

Author Affiliations
  • 1Office of the Dean, University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore
  • 2Office of the Lieutenant Governor, Annapolis, Maryland
  • 3Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, Baltimore
JAMA. 2013;310(3):259-260. doi:10.1001/jama.2013.7236

Health disparities remain a serious problem in the United States. Minorities and lower-income residents have overall higher rates of morbidity and mortality attributable to preventable and manageable conditions compared with non-Hispanic whites and individuals of higher socioeconomic status. Causes of disparities range from the environmental, such as substandard housing and poor air quality; to the behavioral, such as higher rates of smoking and obesity; to the medical, such as inadequate access to high-quality and culturally competent medical care.1,2