cover of book

Seeing Patients: Unconscious Bias in Health Care
by Augustus A. White III, M.D., Augustus A White and David Chanoff
Harvard University Press, 2011
eISBN: 978-0-674-05877-4 | Cloth: 978-0-674-04905-5
Library of Congress Classification RD27.35.W53A3 2011
Dewey Decimal Classification 362.108996073

This book uses the story of one of the authors, Gus White, as a way to talk about unconscious biases and their consequences to the medical profession and beyond. White is an orthopedic surgeon, who grew up in Tennessee under Jim Crow, went to Brown, and was the only black student at Stanford Medical School. He was the first black chief resident at Yale, the only black surgeon in Vietnam, and was the first black chief of service in a Harvard teaching hospital. His life spans an enormous change in American race relations, and he has many eye opening stories to tell. His description of his early years in an extremely segregated and racist society now reads like something from another world. White and Chanoff want to use the autobiographical approach of this book to show how great the disparities still are, and make the case for “culturally competent” medical training, in a way that is more vivid and memorable than a research review or policy paper. The book looks at White’s life, but always with an eye to what moved him to the idea of equality in medicine and problems of disparities in medicine.
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