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Ethnicity Influences Access To Health Care In Children


(Use of health services by children and young people according to ethnicity and social class: secondary analysis of a national survey)

Contrary to previous studies, Helen Cooper and colleagues from the University of Surrey report in this week's BMJ that the use of health services by young people (0 - 19 years) is not so much related to socioeconomic status as ethnicity.

In their analysis of over 20,000 (20, 473) children and young people in the 1991-4 General Household Survey, the authors found that even though South Asian youngsters are more likely to consult with their GP, they are less likely to use hospital services than their white contemporaries. From this Cooper et al conclude that children and young people from minority ethnic groups may receive a poorer quality of health care than white children in the UK, even when taking account of socioeconomic position and health status.


Ms Helen Cooper, Research Fellow, Department of Sociology, University of Surrey, Guildford, Surrey


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