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The impact of racism on the future health of adults: a prospective cohort study

43 months
Approved budget:
Professor James Stanley
Health issue:
Mental health (and sleep disorders)
Proposal type:
Lay summary
Racism – at an individual or structural level – is recognised as an important determinant of health. Most evidence comes from cross-sectional studies, where experience of racism and health status are measured simultaneously, making it difficult to tell whether racism actually causes poorer health. We propose a study to strengthen this evidence base by examining the impact of experience of racial discrimination on subsequent health. We will recruit people who participated in the 2016/17 NZ Health Survey and reported experiencing racism, matching them with other participants (similar by ethnicity, age, socioeconomic status but without experience of racism), and re-interviewing them about their health status approximately two years after their NZHS interview. We can then determine if people who experienced racism had a different change in health in this period. This will strengthen evidence to support developing interventions to reduce levels of racism, reduce inequities and improve New Zealanders' health.