Skip navigation

Shangyuan Ma, PhD Student

Disparity of Breast Cancer Treatment for Black Women

1. System perspectives on prevalence of polypharmacy in skilled nursing facilities

Ma graphic of systems dynamicsInappropriate polypharmacy and medication use among elderly residents in long-term care settings like a nursing home or nursing facilities are costly and may lead to adverse drug events. The Indiana Safer Medication Administration Regimens and Treatment (SMART) campaign, which is funded by the Indiana State Department of Health, was performing two-year pilot research (2016-18) with the objectives of medication reduction, cost-efficient and diminishing use of psychotropic medications. This project is a side study under SMART and focusing on reviewing the medication flow, information flow, and the prescription/deprescription processes to identify potential the barriers and opportunities to address the prevalence of polypharmacy in nursing facilities.




2. Tracking the process of treatment seeking in black breast cancer patients:

The study is motivated by the disparate mortality rate of black versus white breast cancer patients in the greater Indianapolis area. Many studies have verified the existence of racial disparities in breast cancer mortality; however, one study found that racial differences were fully attenuated when adjusting for SES, insurance, and treatment delays; while others found that racial disparities were not eliminated regardless of covariates in the model. This project is funded by The Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (CTSI) with Community Health Partnerships (CHeP) Trailblazer Award funding. The project aims to examine the disparities in access and patient experiences from screening to treatment, and to develop a process mapping of care delivery to identify the barriers that impede the progress of black patients through the cancer treatment system.

Publication: System perspectives on polypharmacy in skilled nursing facilities (in progress) #3 of 2017 Indiana Medicaid Data Challenge/Competition in October 2017

See news article: "Investigating disparate cancer treatment experiences of Indy women"