"The United States health care delivery system is among the worlds finest with outstanding providers, facilities, and technology. Many Americans enjoy easy access to care. However, not all Americans have full access to high quality health care. Released in 2003, the first National Healthcare Disparities Report (NHDR) is a comprehensive national overview of disparities in health care among racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic groups in the general U.S. population and among priority populations. This second NHDR is built upon the 2003 report and continues to include a comprehensive national overview of disparities in health care in America. In addition, in the 2004 report, a second critical goal of the report is developed: tracking the Nations progress towards the elimination of health care disparities. In the 2004 report, three key themes are highlighted for policymakers, clinicians, health system administrators, and community leaders who seek to use this information to improve health care services for all Americans - Disparities are pervasive; Improvement is possible; Gaps in information exist, especially for specific conditions and populations."
AHRQ Publication No. 05-0014
Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality: http://qualitytools.ahrq.gov/