We in health care have known for a long time that different groups of people have different levels of health. The data has long been available, showing us that inequality persists in many areas, including race, ethnicity, age, language and sexual orientation.
Ensuring that every patient receives high-quality care is a special interest in Washington State, where we have one of the most diverse zip codes in the country, as well as one of the least.
It is because of this focus that we are excited to be bringing Dr. Damon Tweedy to our Annual Meeting in October. Dr. Tweedy wrote Black Man in a White Coat, an extraordinary memoir that tells the story “of his experience grappling with race, bias and the unique health problems of black Americans.”
Through the lens of health in the African-American community (including his own health), he provides insight into the public policy and clinical practice dynamics at play.
There are thousands of people in this state who are working tirelessly to improve the health care system, and improving equity of care is an essential element to that work. We hope that you will take the time to read the book and more importantly, let the Annual Meeting be a springboard to conversation in your organization.
We look forward to seeing you at the Annual Meeting.
Senior Vice President, Patient Safety