- Andrea N. Trejo, MA, Doctoral Student, University of Georgia, Athens, GA
- Will Lusenhop, MSW, PhD, LICSW, Clinical Assistant Professor, University of New Hampshire, Durham, NH
- Gretchen Buchanan, MA, LAMFT, LADC, Doctoral Candidate, University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN
- Tanya Vishnevsky, PhD, CEO, Natick Counseling
- Melissa Jensen, PhD, BHC, Clinical Director of Behavioral Health Integration, Bon Secours Mercy Health
- Eboni Winford, PHD, MPH, Director of Research and Health Equity, Cherokee Health Systems
- Norma Balli-Borrero, MS, LMT, LPC Associate, UT Health
- Melissa Jensen, PhD BHC, Clinical Director of Behavioral Health Integration Bon Secours Mercy Health; Norma Balli-Borrero, MS, LMT, LPC Associate, Research Assistant, UT Health
Systemic and institutionalized racism has historically shaped U.S. healthcare policy and the U.S. healthcare system. Racism, in conjunction with its multi-directional relationship with social determinants of health, government policies, and sociocultural climate, have created the health disparities that patients who are Black, Indigenous and/or people of color, continue to face. Health disparities can also be attributed to lesser quality of healthcare given to patients of color by healthcare organizations and providers. Conscious and unconscious bias affects how providers communicate with their patients and the medical decisions they make.1 For example, scholars have identified healthcare providers’ implicit biases and explicit discrimination as a contributing factor to the disproportionately higher mortality rates of Black mothers.2 Unfortunately, the role of healthcare providers’ own racist biases in shaping patients’ access to equitable healthcare treatment is often side-stepped and minimized in discussion. Even worse, many providers are unaware of the ways in which their own biases may be shaping the care they provide.1 Biases may also shape the policies and climates of our healthcare organizations at the administrative and managerial levels. In order to work toward an antiracist3 healthcare system in which all patients can thrive, we must address the ways in which healthcare clinics and providers inflict and perpetuate harm. For the purposes of this presentation, we will focus on three areas that impact the quality of care and access to care that our patients of color directly receive in their healthcare environments: 1) organizations’ policies and their implementation; 2) organizational climate; 3) staff and providers’ beliefs and behaviors. In this presentation, we will briefly discuss the ways in which these areas impact patient quality of and access to healthcare. We will present steps and strategies that healthcare providers can implement to disrupt and repair the ways in which we as providers, and our organizations have inflicted violence upon patients of color.
- Describe a framework to understand how specific individual and organizational level changes are necessary to create an ant-racist organization.
- Identify specific steps they can personally take to interrupt implicit bias in their healthcare interactions that are harmful to BIPOC patients.
- Identify steps they can take within their organizations to advocate for changes to organizational practices and policies harmful to BIPOC patients.