The research of Loretta Erhunmwunsee, M.D., and team showed that low socioeconomic status is an independent prognostic factor for poor survival in patients with nonsmall cell lung and esophageal cancers. Patients who lived in areas with high poverty levels, low median incomes and low education levels had worse mortality.
One of her research interests focuses on better understanding why ethnic minorities and poor/underserved populations have worse outcomes and poor quality of life in early stage lung cancer. She and her team used previous work to design an intervention to address disparities. This line of work also involves improving the uptake of lung cancer screening in high risk populations.