Care Disparity in Pediatrics

Jennifer Blake Holden

In recent years, some gut-wrenching statistics have been found by clinicians fighting to lessen the gap of racial bias in the healthcare system. By looking at some of the realities, we can widen our perspective and invoke change.  A study on racial bias in pediatrics showed that African American children are 3 times more likely to have to go to the ER due to breathing emergencies related to Asthma compared to non-Hispanic white children. Comparatively, African American children are significantly less likely to have received preventative and anti-inflammatory medications although adequate diagnosis exists. This trend in racial disparity for African Americans receiving adequate pain management can be seen in studies across the board. In the above case, it is experienced within our youngest generation. Countless additional studies show that African American patients experience racial bias in pain management for postpartum, trauma injuries, and daily management of chronic pain. Lack of adequate medical treatment among African American patients have been long reported by patients and their family members. The research of racial bias in healthcare still has an opportunity for growth and now is the time to push forward! 

Jennifer Blake-Holden is an acupuncture student studying at Emperor’s College in Santa Monica, CA. She also works as a front desk receptionist at The Akasha Center for Integrative Medicine.