Patterns of disease are known to differ between ethnic groups. For diagnosis and treatment to be effective, it is essential that health care professionals recognise this. The provision of culturally appropriate and sensitive health care depends upon access to reliable information that highlights ethnic minority patterns of disease, customs and lifestyle which may influence health.
The Ethnic Health Handbook provides rapidly assimilable information for health care professionals caring for ethnic minority patients in a variety of settings. For ease of reference each entry is arranged alphabetically and follows a standard format. Entries are presented in an abbreviated form to enable busy practitioners to quickly access the relevant information. Compiled in consultation with ethnic community leaders, health workers and representatives of ethnic and religious organisations, the Handbook provides an invaluable source of data on demography, religion, refugee health and the health and customs of all the major ethnic groups in Britain today. A chapter on ethnic monitoring has been included in recognition of the mandaory status of this procedure for all in-patients in England.
Health care profesionals concerned with providing an informed, equitable and caring health service will find the Handbook essential reading.
Dr Ghada Karmi, MB,PhD, MRCP, FFPHM, is a specialist in Public Health. As the former Head of the first NHS ethnic health unit in Britain, the Health and Ethnicity Programme, she was responsible for research and development of health care health care for black and ethnic minorities in North Thames Regional Health Authorty. Currently she is Senior Research Fellow at the Centre for Middle Eastern and Islamic Sudies, University of Durham.