From understanding to action: interventions for surgical disparities

Butool Hisam, Cheryl K. Zogg, Muhammad A. Chaudhary, Ammar Ahmed, Hammad Khan, Shalini Selvarajah, Maya J. Torain, Navin R. Changoor, Adil H. Haider

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

34 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Health care disparities are a well-documented phenomenon. Despite the development and implementation of multiple interventions, disparities in surgery have proven persistent. Thought to arise from a combination of patient, provider, and system-level factors, the objective of this study was to identify what is currently known about factors that influence surgical disparities and elucidate possible interventions to address them across four intervention-based themes: (1) condition-specific targeted interventions; (2) increased reliance on quantitative factors; (3) doctor-patient communication; and (4) cultural humility. Data sources: Articles were abstracted from PubMed, EMBASE, and the Cochrane Library using controlled keyword vocabulary. Conclusions: There are various forms of interventions to address surgical disparities, spanning knowledge from disparate fields. Promising efforts have emerged towards the successful alleviation of disparities. In order to move the field of surgery from understanding of disparities towards actions to mitigate them, continued development of meaningful quality improvement initiatives are needed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)560-578
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Surgical Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Health care disparities
  • Intervention
  • Racial disparities
  • Review
  • Surgical disparities


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