Gap exists in radiology literature regarding healthcare disparities

By staff writers

May 17, 2021 -- There's a gap in research regarding healthcare disparities in radiology when compared with surgery and internal medicine, according to a study published May 14 in Academic Radiology.

A team led by Dr. Lisa Americo of Northwell Mather Hospital in Port Jefferson, NY, conducted a literature review of articles published between 2017 and 2020. The group performed four searches for the terms "health," "disparities": One of the Journal Citation Report for the five highest-ranking journals in the fields of radiology, internal medicine, and surgery; a second search of this same data using impact factor; and two additional searches on PubMed using terms "health" and "disparities AND [specialty]" and "medical education."

In the overall search, the group found 1,817 articles that addressed "health" and "disparities." Of these they found the following:

  • 14.6% were in radiology.
  • 65.7% were in internal medicine.
  • 19.7% were surgery.

The initial PubMed search found 6,543 articles, of which 9.9% were for radiology, 32.4% for internal medicine, and 57.7% for surgery.

Radiology needs to step up its game when it comes to healthcare disparity research, the team wrote.

"A gap in healthcare disparity literature exists for radiology as compared to surgery and internal medicine," it concluded. "However, radiology has demonstrated a recent significant push towards understanding healthcare disparities. Radiology should continue to capitalize on its momentum and develop healthcare disparity curricula and research."

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