Dramatic differences in health among racial or ethnic groups in the United States have been observed repeatedly across a wide range of important indicators of health from the beginning of life through old age. This issue brief focuses on disparities in health itself as opposed to disparities in health care, which have been well documented and undoubtedly contribute to disparities in health. The brief examines the causes of racial and ethnic health disparities, and highlights interventions that demonstrated or promising impacts.
This is one in a series of 12 issue briefs on the social determinants of health. The series began as a product of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Commission to Build a Healthier America and continues as a part of the Foundation's Vulnerable Populations Portfolio.