Health Disparities Health Equity Pandemic Systemic Racism

Twitter Conversations Turn to Health Inequities and Systemic Racism

A couple of days ago, I recorded a podcast with Jared Johnson (@JaredPiano) where we discussed an article I recently wrote about systemic racism and inequities in healthcare. Once we finished recording the podcast, I sent out a tweet sharing my excitement about the podcast. I was pleased to see the responses of several of my healthcare industry colleagues. What is significant is that these thought leaders (Chris Boyer, Jared Johnson, and David Harlow) were tweeting about the social determinants of health and systemic racism. That’s not typical for this group. Our conversations have changed, and they needed to change. This is just the tip of the iceberg, but I hope their passion for this topic continues and that others find it to be infectious. This movement is just beginning. The key will be to sustain interest in these issues and initiate action in the weeks and months to come. (Check out the resources listed at the bottom of this post.)

When the dust settles, will the healthcare industry turn its attention away from these issues and return to some semblance of the status quo? That is one likely outcome. It would be unfortunate.

Opportunities to learn:

Save the date: Join American Public Health Association’s (APHA) Georges Benjamin and @usnews for a June 24 discussion on #SDOH and fighting racism as a public health crisis. RSVP now:

Health Affairs Blog, “Stress Is A Key To Understanding Many Social Determinants Of Health,” February 2020

Digital Health Times, “The Nature of Digital Health & Social Determinants of Health,” February 2020

WBUR, “Racism In Medicine Isn’t An Abstract Notion. It’s Happening All Around Us, Every Day,” June 12, 2020

APM Research Lab, “The color of coronavirus: COVID-19 deaths by race and ethnicity in the U.S.,” June 10, 2020

Medical Economics, “How social determinants of health affect patient outcomes,” June 15, 2020

JAMA “The Moral Determinants of Health,” June 12, 2020 by Donald M. Berwick, MD, MPP

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