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An unequal race: How BME GPs face tougher hurdles


Some comments to this and Shaba's article has highlighted part of the problem. We as GPs do need to do better. We need to keep ourselves to a higher standard of informed conversation. We need to keep the discourse considered, caring, reflective and solutions orientated to support colleagues when there is an obvious multi level, evidenced problem. @Bob - the sentiment is very well put. The direction of travel is encouraging but we have a long road to travel and we all should continue helping the arc of human civilisation improve. The only thing shocking about the St. Georges case is that they were stupid enough to formalise it and leave an audit trail. As you allude to and looking at the stats they were not the worst offenders, just the dumbest. South Africa was equally dumb by keeping laws on the books to engineer prejudice that could be easily attacked by other more 'civilised' countries. Multiple other countries eg.USA, etc etc had worse stats but are able to project a better 'brand' of supposed inclusion. Your practice seems a wonderful place/example. @watchdoc - please don't take this the wrong way but helping one marginalised community does not exclude helping others. Its not zero sum. In fact social science evidence suggests that caring for other human beings has positive effects on the whole of society. A rising tide... The tribalism reasoning does not travel well. A BME woman from a working class state school with a dodgy northern accent will do much much worse than you did. Our success in life as GPs, is always a combination of our stunning genetic brilliance which is outweighed by an order of magnitude by environmental factors. @Harvey Steinwein - not sure how to advance the conversation/respond. Probably disappointment? Again smart caring people should try to help. Again please don't take this the wrong way but 'taking offence easily' is not what Carolyn Wickware's report in this edition of Pulse, points to. I am hoping that having considered the Dr Bawa case and read the references in Carolyn Wickware's report that you could change your heart (just a little) about the gravity and reality of the problem. I do hope @Another Titled Buffon - ..... Odd that Shaba's personal heartfelt and vulnerable article generates a twitter-esque #AllLivesMatter response. I feel disappointed and wonder if Shaba feels even worse, probably even hurt. Carolyn Wickware's piece was presented as hard evidence and I suspect the editor thought that the balance with a more personal piece would help smart, caring, empathic professionals understand the true impact of institutional as well as personal racism. So as not to fuel a tit for tat I don't think it would be helpful for us to challenge the extrapolation of hiring "close family members" reasoning. Adding this to a debate of preferentially hiring, promoting, passing, advancing not prosecuting or imprisoning doctors/people(strangers) other doctors of your own race?.. Following the family/race logic seems to travel down a worrying rabbit hole that I am sure you did not intend. @Vinci Ho - could not have put it better myself! Beautifully researched and written. We should recognise that all human beings have inherent biases. We improve as people and as a society when we acknowledge them and always humbly try to improve ourselves and help others. We may be relatively powerless to change patients and the public. That should be no reason to avoid change in ourselves and our sphere of influence. We should worry about trumpesque/school debate tactics eg. exaggerating the position of your opponents point of view and worse still exaggerated and falsely attributed solutions ("increasing punishments to non-BME so as to be seen to balance the books." watchdoc). We should not absolve ourselves from the real world change we can make to our own point of view. We can and should influence our immediate working environment and our leadership where we can. We are educated and lettered professionals and should hold ourselves and our profession to a higher standard.. We all have daughters, friends, colleagues and a wider society that will benefit.

Posted date

05 May 2018

Posted time