A Recent Focus on Diversity in Health Care Might Perpetuate More Bias

Last month, a page in a nursing textbook showed how some medical professionals are being encouraged to treat patients based on racial stereotypes that presume that people of different backgrounds have different responses to pain. According to a piece by Project HBE, the intention behind the image featured in the textbook was part of a new method where schools have “adopted a systematic approach to teach their students how to treat those from different backgrounds.” Intention aside, the insert is ripe for misinterpretation and promotes racial stereotypes that place patients at harm.

“Cultural sensitivity is like ordering a non-meat dish when going out to eat with a vegetarian friend,” Project HBE explains. “However, skewed cultural sensitivity in healthcare that influences the physician’s choices can ultimately have life-or-death implications.”

Director of Publisher Growth @Medium

Sign up for Up to Speed

By Momentum

A newsletter by Momentum that keeps the conversation going Take a look.

By signing up, you will create a Medium account if you don’t already have one. Review our Privacy Policy for more information about our privacy practices.

Check your inbox
Medium sent you an email at to complete your subscription.

Momentum is a blog that captures and reflects the moment we find ourselves in, one where rampant anti-Black racism is leading to violence, trauma, protest, reflection, sorrow, and more. Momentum doesn’t look away when the news cycle shifts.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store