Do patients have better health outcomes after seeing physicians of the same race? The ongoing reality of disparate health outcomes, with black patients typically experiencing worse outcomes than members of other racial groups, has drawn significant attention to this question. Prominent medical organizations as well as political leaders – including members of the Supreme Court of the United States – now assume that “racial concordance” would improve health outcomes. Under this framework, medical schools are prioritizing diversity in student admissions, while medical providers are debating ways to match patients and physicians by race. The assumption behind such actions is that people of certain races are inherently biased toward members of other races, a problem that racial concordance would purportedly solve.
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