A new study has found that the risk of death after a traumatic brain injury is twice as high among people of color as it is among white people. According to a report on HealthDay, Oregon Health & Science University researchers looked at outcomes among more than 6,300 TBI patients treated at the university’s hospital between 2006 and 2017.
The overall death rate was 9.9%, but it was 14.6% among patients who identified as part of racial or ethnic minority groups.
What the Study Found
After adjusting for age, the severity of the injury, and other factors, the study’s authors concluded that minority patients had just over twice the risk of dying in the hospital compared with white patients. There was no bias in the treatment patients received while in the hospital, researchers said. The results of the study were published June 2 in the journal Frontiers in Surgery.
However, the study’s authors said their findings highlight underlying racial health disparities. They say if they had run the same analysis with patients with pneumonia, the results may be similar. The problem, researchers say, is rooted in “the social determinants of health,” including factors such as nutrition, lifestyle, occupations, and healthcare access.
This is the first study to examine racial and ethnic disparities among brain trauma patients. As part of this study, researchers recommend prompt action to recognize the racial disparities in healthcare and commit to action to identify the factors that cause and perpetuate this “disproportionate suffering.”
Rights of Brain Injury Victims
Depending on the extent of the injuries, a brain injury can result in a multitude of losses. Victims may incur emergency room and hospitalization expenses, lost wages, and even a loss of earning potential. Some victims may never again be able to return to work, and victims of severe brain injuries may require round-the-clock assistance to perform basic functions. The financial, emotional, and physical losses suffered in brain injury accidents are difficult to calculate.
If the incident resulted from someone else’s negligence, then, he or she should be held accountable for the victim’s injuries, damages, and losses. An experienced California brain injury lawyer can help you better understand your legal rights and options.