On August 10, I had the wonderful opportunity to work with a group of amazing individuals to assess the biases present in our current healthcare system. This project was a part of a summer intensive program through MedSTEMPowered.
3. Black People Receive Less Quality
Health Care than White People
In 2012, DHSS Agency for Healthcare
reported that in 191 measures ranging from
examinations to life threatening illnesses ,
43% of the healthcare provided favored
Black Children Are Significantly Less Likely to
Receive Antibiotics than White Children
Research done by JS Gerber and others
on a million clinical visits for respiratory
infection symptoms found this true,
even after discarding socioeconomic
Black Women Are 43% More Likely to Die
From Breast Cancer than White Women
However, they are also less likely to even
develop the disease. This may also
connected to another study where black
women receiving chemotherapy are more
likely to receive non standardized treatment.
Higher Physician’s Implicit Bias Lead To Black
Patients Reporting Lower Levels of Trust and
Negative behaviors towards black patients
due to implicit bias leads to poorer post-
visit adherence and subsequently, poorer
Racial Disparities in the Hospital
4. African Americans have a
20% higher mortality rate
than the White population
While this can be attributed to socioeconomic status as well, do keep in mind that because black people are more likely to
have a lower status than whites, that means less access to healthcare in general before even having to deal with racial
disparities within the hospital.
In addition, the effects of regular day discrimination can have a major toll on one’s health and psychological well-being,
which is why it’s important that the hospital can be equitable and safe for all races.
They also have a 4-year lower
This is the same as it was in the
1950s, according to the National
Center for Health Statistics.
A Lack of Progress in Health Equity
5. The U.S Census Bureau projects
that by the year 2060, the
hispanic/latino population will
increase by 114% and African
American/black increase by 42-
63%, in comparison to a 21%
increase for the white population.
We need to make progress now to
prevent disparities from
increasing and affecting future
Why is it Important We Solve This?
6. Solution: Professional Workshops
Having adults who have seen, experienced,
studied or researched racial disparities can
share their experiences at these workshops.
These adults can play a role in educating others
about the disparities in the healthcare system
because they truly understand the obstacles
A proposed solution to the problem of racial
disparities in the healthcare system is the
creation of workshops. Adults always have
workshops where they learn from one another.
These workshops can help educate adults on
why it is important that we create health
7. Solution: Underserved Communities
Cultural barriers is also an issue. There are
several attempts to strengthen connections
between patients and providers such as
medical interpretation services. Since minority
health professionals are more likely to work in
medically underserved areas, a more diverse
workforce could help increase access to
A proposed solution is improving the number
of providers in medically underserved
communities. These communities have
members of racial minority groups that are
less likely than whites to live in
neighborhoods with adequate health
resources. These people are underrepresented
in the health care workforce.
8. Solution: Health Coverage
A proposed solution is expanding health
insurance coverage for minorities. Racial/ethnic
minority populations (⅓ of U.S. population) are
disproportionately represented among the
uninsured. It is vital that these people get
coverage so they can have a regular doctor and
get routine care just like the insured.
Minorities are less likely to get health insurance
through their jobs. This is why Medicaid, a national
source of coverage for the poor and disabled, is
important for 1 in 4 African-Americans, American
Indians, and Latinos and for 1 in 10 Asian/Pacific
Americans and Whites. Efforts are needed to ensure
that current sources of insurance are maintained
while other sources of coverage for those who are
uninsured are being enlarged.