Transportation Access, Inactivity, and Obesity Play a Role in Cancer Deaths
A study in the New England Journal of Medicine has found that obesity has been linked to 13 types of cancer. USA Todayreports that the decline in cancer deaths since the 1970s has been counterbalanced by an increase in cancer deaths related to other unhealthy lifestyle choices. One of the issues contributing to an increase in cancer deaths is a lack of transportation access for patients to get to the health care treatments they need.
If people do not live close to a specialist that they are supposed to see, then they are less likely to seek the treatment that they need. This disproportionately affects those living at or near the poverty line.
For those who rely on carpools or public transportation to get to work, attending a doctor’s appointment could cause them to miss work. Transportation also plays into the disparities between urban and rural populations.
The story notes that Blue Cross and Blue Shield have partnered with ride hailing service Lyft to provide transportation for patients living in "transportation deserts".