What happens when the medical caretakers are ill-equipped to care for your personal caretakers?
The answer — so far — for the cardiovascular care of women and people of color has not been encouraging. Conscious or unconscious gender, racial and ethnic biases are adversely impacting their health on the whole. And the costs are staggering.
The recently-published white paper and supplemental information from “Beyond Intervention: Patient Experience And Health Equity” survey of 1,289 people suffering from vascular diseases across 13 countries — along with 408 physicians and 173 healthcare leaders — found:
- Women with Coronary Artery Disease (CAD) and/or with Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD) reported more challenging experiences compared to their male counterparts in relation to access to healthcare, emotional factors surrounding healthcare interactions and relationships with their physician.
- Women and non-white patients are less likely to be recommended for and receive cardiac catheterization compared with white male patients, despite sex and ethnicity-agnostic clinical guidelines, with poorer clinical outcomes and patient experiences compared with their male counterparts. How poor? Overall mortality rate during hospitalization for myocardial infarction — heart attack — was 16.7% among women and 11.5% among men. When looking at patients under 50, the mortality rate for women was two times that of men.
- For women, those outcomes impact more than the patient alone in terms of the economic burden placed on healthcare systems and the workplace due to repeat hospitalizations and missed workdays.