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Cancer Disparities

Letter requesting hearing on research disparities by House Energy and Commerce Committee

 Health Disparities

Hearing on Research Disparities Sought
By House Energy, Commerce Democrats

Feb. 25 — The Democratic leaders on the House Energy and Commerce Committee requested a hearing on the inclusion of women and minorities in health research in a letter sent Feb. 25 to the committee chairman and health subcommittee chairman.

“We need to learn more about why men and women and different minority groups have different incidence and prevalence of certain diseases and conditions. Without such knowledge, we may be missing opportunities to find cures and treatments,” Reps. Henry A. Waxman (D-Calif.) and Frank Pallone Jr. (D-N.J.) wrote.

Waxman is the ranking member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee; Pallone is the ranking member of the Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee. They addressed their request to committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-Mich.) and health subcommittee Chairman Joe Pitts (R-Pa.).

The National Institutes of Health Revitalization Plan (Pub. L. 103–43), enacted in 1993, requires the agency to ensure that women and members of minority groups and their subpopulations are included in all human-subjects research.

Waxman and Pallone said considerable progress has been made in more than two decades, but that there still are many conditions that disproportionately affect minority groups, such as diabetes and HIV/AIDS.

“Health disparities between men and women persist—in conditions such as depression and cardiovascular disease,” Waxman and Pallone's letter said.

For More Information

The letter is available at http://democrats.energycommerce.house.gov/sites/default/files/documents/Upton-Pitts-NIH-Womens-and-Minority-Health-2014-2-25.pdf.