Patient Race ID


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Mark C. -

this is ridiculous...….
Race / Ethnicity / geographic country of origin are all actually associated with numerous medically and socially important issues that can affect patient care directly.
knowing a patient's race / ethnicity / geographic country of origin is important for these and other reasons.
Stop the Woke madness please.
Self identified?? really.

Anand S. -

Mark - I hope you're open to discussing this more. There's a great deal of literature in the area.
NEJM just published a wonderful article on the topic that I think would be beneficial for everyone to look at:,%20December%2030,%202021%20DM586164_NEJM_Non_Subscriber&bid=752391597

They address the issues you state head on:
"The question at hand is whether mentioning race or ethnicity at the beginning of an oral presentation or chart note enhances or undermines these objectives. Some proponents may argue that this information suggests initial biologic probabilities that are immediately relevant for hypothesis generation, diagnosis, and treatment. For example, proponents may cite genetic examples such as sickle cell disease (far more prevalent among Black Americans than in other U.S. racial or ethnic groups) and hemochromatosis (far more prevalent among White populations than in other racial or ethnic groups). Other proponents may argue that race or ethnicity should be acknowledged immediately even if it has little diagnostic or therapeutic relevance for most patients — that there is a benefit to processing an individual patient’s history and physical findings through the lens of race or ethnicity, given the impact of racism on health.

We believe these arguments are problematic, for reasons that fall into two main categories. First, routine inclusion of race or ethnicity at the beginning of a case presentation reinforces the still-prevalent but mistaken belief that race or ethnicity is a robust surrogate for genetic or innate biologic predisposition to disease.2,3 Racial and ethnic groups are not static, uncontroversial categories; because they are socially constructed, they are fluid and evolve over time. Moreover, commonly used racial and ethnic categories are often confusing mixtures of skin color, geographic location, ancestry, culture, and religion. Although there may be a strong statistical correlation between patient-identified race or ethnicity and a particular clinical diagnosis in a specific geographic area at a given point in time, these rare exceptions — which are often mediated by ancestry4 — should not drive the standard template for case presentations. Moreover, immediately mentioning race or ethnicity may predispose clinicians to premature diagnostic closure, a cognitive error in clinical reasoning. The subliminal effect of classifying a patient by race or ethnicity before hearing or reading about the patient’s illness history and physical findings may result in incorrect inclusion or exclusion of diagnostic hypotheses."

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SNACK: Patient Race ID Full episode audio for MD edition 14:44 min - 18 MB - M4A