Liberation in the Exam Room: Racial Justice and Equity in Health Care

Southern Jamaica Plain Health Center
Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts, USA

This tool is intended to be used as a starting guideline for individuals in the health care delivery context as they work to identify key areas of focus on racial justice and health equity. The authors and IHI recommend using this tool not as a standalone document, but as a resource to begin conversations with teams within the organization toward developing a deeper understanding of structural racism and its impact on achieving health equity. IHI staff members have been included in this process and it has been transformational for us as well.

“If you have come here to help me, you are wasting your time. But if you have come because your liberation is bound up with mine, then let us work together.” — Lila Watson

Liberation is about working together in new ways that are self-reflective and rooted in history to address structural racism in health care — and to go beyond providing services, to our own personal roles as health care team members in dismantling oppression.

In the summer of 2016, the Racial Reconciliation and Healing team and the executive and medical directors at Southern Jamaica Plain Health Center hosted a series of meetings with physicians and other medical professionals from the greater Boston area. The focus of the meetings was to integrate a racial justice framework into health care. This document emerged from that process.

Southern Jamaica Plain Health Center is a participant in the Pursuing Equity initiative.

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