Implicit Bias Analysis

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Implicit bias remains prevalent in healthcare today particularly regarding physicians’ diagnoses. Implicit bias is an unconscious and automatically activated bias and explicit bias is a conscious and intentional bias (van Ryn 2011). Both implicit and explicit bias exhibit negative overgeneralized feelings about a particular group. With this definition, it is clear that implicit bias is similar to explicit bias but they are not the same. To correctly analyze the three encounters given in the following paragraphs, it is important to know the difference between the two. The Black Man in A White Coat by Damon Tweedy M.D. is a memoir based on an African American doctors’ experiences during his journey to become a physician. In his memoir he reflects …show more content…
This encounter is an example of racial concordance; the patient is the same race as his physician. Based on the results of the study, an encounter between a physician and an African American male would have a low rate of implicit race. In terms of race, the majority of Black American physicians do not prefer White Americans over Black Americans thus preventing a racially bias diagnosis for a patient (Sabin 2009). A study performed by the Society of General Internal Medicine, reflects this idea of unequal and bias diagnosis for patients. Implicit bias will occur in this situation due to the implication of the lack of compliance in African American males. In the Black Man in a White Coat, Damon witnesses implicit bias between a White American doctor and an African American male. Gary, the patient was knowledgeable about his hypertension and what lifestyle changes he could pursue to lower it as an alternative to taking medicine. In the past Gary had promised his previous physician that he will work on his health before and did not do so, causing Damon’s colleague Dr. Rhodes to diagnose him with obsessive compulsive personality disorder (OCPD) without consulting a psychiatrist. This means that he is aware of his condition, but chooses not to take action. Damon realizes the implicit bias in this situation and disagrees heavily with it saying “I was probably more …show more content…
Female MDs have a low implicit race compared to males (Sabin 2009). The study performed by the medical doctors of Johns Hopkins University suggests that overall, female physicians are preferred over male physicians. To explain this, they came to the conclusion that female physicians are preferred over male physicians because they resemble the social qualities of a typical female. The doctors continue to say that the females have a more collaborative relationship with their patients, spend more time with their patients, and discuss social issues with their patients. Though this is true female physicians are known to more willingly prescribe pain medication for a White American Patient, but not a Black American patient (Sabin 2009). Based on this information you can conclude that, even though both the physician and the patient are female, a female physician who is implicitly bias against black Americans will still treat the patient with racial bias regardless of the patients’ gender. The final encounter we will analyze an encounter between a physician who is a Latino American male and patient who is an African American male. Hispanic MDs have a high implicit preference for White Americans over Black Americans (Sabin 2009). In fact, only fifty-two percent of Hispanic physicians believe that patients are often are treated

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