I need to to do a response (reply) to other student using citation. On enclosed paper Running head: RACISM IN OUR HEALTHCARE SYSTEM​1

Racism in Our Healthcare System

Kristinna C Calhoon

Cultural Competency in Healthcare

Prof Marcia Archibald

March 2, 2016

Racism in Our Healthcare System

Racism has unfortunately been around for centuries and unfortunately is still very much alive today. Healthcare is a human need. It is needed to in order to live and maintain a healthy lifestyle. Although our healthcare system seems to be geared more on caring for the upper and middle socioeconomic class rather than on basic human need.

A greatly known example of racism in healthcare would be the forty year span between 1932-1972. This is when the U.S Public Health Service conducted the Syphilis experiment on 399 African American men who were impoverished sharecroppers in Alabama. These 399 men had tested positive for Syphilis and not only did the Public Health Service intentionally not inform the men that they were infected but also failed to treat them with the proven treatment of Penicillin. By the end of the experiment, 28 of the men died directly because of Syphilis, 100 were dead from related complications, 40 of their wives had been infected, and 19 of their children had been born with congenital Syphilis (Brunner, 2007). This experiment goes against all ethical healthcare practices, yet was performed by our own United States government. This experiment concluded only 44 years ago.

Racism in healthcare is unfortunately still very much an ongoing problem in many ways. The attitude of a medical professional towards a patient if hateful and racist can be detrimental to a patient’s recovery and care. Money can buy better health and this is why President Obama implemented The Affordable Healthcare act. Although since this act was implemented it has had many downfalls and shortcomings to date.


Brunner, B. (2007). The Tuskegee Syphilis Experiment. Retrieved from

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