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Heart-SickThe Politics of Risk, Inequality, and Heart Disease$
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Janet K. Shim

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780814786833

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814786833.001.0001

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(p.1) Introduction

Janet K. Shim

NYU Press

This introductory chapter presents an interview with Juanita Miller, a black woman who was diagnosed with arthritis, diabetes, and hypertension, and has a medical history of heart attacks, and congestive heart failure. In relation to her condition, a study found that black women had more risk factors for heart disease than their white counterparts. Socioeconomic status, including occupational category, combined family income, educational level, and insurance status might be a contributing factor for the disease. In addition to being disproportionately at risk for heart disease, black woman have also been shown to have high rates of delaying care. Their delaying of care is related to structural barriers such as lack of time, child care, transportation, access to care, and so on. Juxtaposing the study with Miller's narrative, the book examines the causes of the disease alongside ideas about health inequalities.

Keywords:   socioeconomic status, heart disease, black woman, structural barriers, health inequalities

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