Implicit Bias Within Healthcare
Check this out. What you will see is a really important piece on implicit racial bias within healthcare. Why did I underline “within” twice? Simple. Because it is the most important point made here. That is, while it is generally assumed that any racial biases shown in healthcare are the results of general biases coming from society at large, it turns out that the medical community has its own, special, forms of disparity. They are found in the lack of persons of color in the healthcare media, the extremely small representation of minorities in academic medicine, and so forth. In fact, the point is made that disparities in healthcare delivery actually spill over, making racial inequality there even worse.
Set forth here are practical steps that can be taken to correct this egregious situation. Steps like having broad based “bias training” for healthcare students. Having translators and translations readily available. And appointing a “chief equity officer” to pull this initiative all together within an institution.
Bottom Line. A few days ago, I wrote about the excellent program being mounted by Johnson and Johnson, i.e., their $100 Million, 5-year commitment to “Race to Health Equity.” Today’s piece puts a new spin on this mission. It’s not just about getting more healthcare to the disadvantaged. It’s also about making sure that the practitioners are not dispensing bias with their medicines.
In other words, “Physician, heal thyself!”