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Preference for Same-Race Health Care Providers and Perceptions of Interpersonal Discrimination in Health Care

Jennifer Malat and Mary Ann Hamilton
Journal of Health and Social Behavior
Vol. 47, No. 2 (Jun., 2006), pp. 173-187
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/30040309
Page Count: 15
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Preference for Same-Race Health Care Providers and Perceptions of Interpersonal Discrimination in Health Care
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Abstract

This article examines black Americans' preference for black health care providers. Using data from a national survey, we assess how blacks 'perceptions of discrimination are related to preference for same-race health care providers. Overall, the belief that discrimination is frequent in different-race doctor-patient dyads is associated with greater preference for a same-race provider. However, the belief that discrimination occurs regardless of a doctors race reduces preference for a same-race provider. Finally, general perceptions of discrimination are distinct from concerns about personally being treated unfairly, and low personal concern about unfair treatment reduces preference for a same-race provider among those who believe that interpersonal discrimination occurs frequently. These results suggest a complex picture of how perceptions of discrimination influence preferred race of health care provider among blacks in the United States.

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