Objectives: We compared trends in prevalence rates of preventable cardiovascular- and diabetes-related hospitalizations between African Americans and members of other major US racial/ethnic groups.
Methods: Standardized rates for 1991 to 1998 were derived from hospital and US census data for California.
Results: African Americans had significantly higher hospitalization rates in 1991, and discrepancies in rates continued to widen through 1998. Overall male and female rates were approximately 3 times higher for angina, 7 times higher for hypertension, between 7 and 8 times higher for congestive heart failure, and 10 times higher for diabetes.
Conclusions: Widening disparities in cardiovascular- and diabetes-related health conditions were observed in this study, possibly owing to racial inequalities in provision of effective primary care.