Responsibility of Medical Journals in Addressing Racism in Health Care

Gbenga Ogedegbe
2020 JAMA Network Open  
Racism, as a health, public health, and health care issue has received important attention in recent medical journals. 1-3 However, while racial and ethnic health disparities have been the subject of research for decades, racism has received comparatively little attention in research published in medical journals. Recent protests across the US and beyond in response to the horrific death of George Floyd, an unarmed Black man, at the hands of a police officer in Minneapolis, have drawn renewed
more » ... tention to the consequences of systemic racism on the health of Black, Hispanic, indigenous, and other people of color. Defined as a "system of structures, policies, practices, and norms that construct opportunities and assigns values based on one's phenotype," 4 racism was identified 30 years ago as an underlying cause of health inequities. 5 Since then, the role of structural pillars of racism such as employment discrimination, mass incarceration, redlining, substandard public education, exposure to environmental hazards, differential treatment in health care settings, and poor access to quality health care have been extensively documented as social determinants of health. These structural pillars of racism foster an insidious and pervasive environment that promotes the persisting racial gap in morbidity and mortality. Given this context, it is important to reassess the role of medical journals in addressing the health effects of systemic racism.
doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2020.16531 pmid:32816027 fatcat:pi6377qufje6tkfo3cnrkxr47a