A group of 67,000 Pediatricians are acknowledging the effects of racism on children’s health and are recommending steps doctors can take to help combat it.
The American Academy of Pediatrics released its policy statement, “Racism and Its Impact on Child and Adolescent Health,” July 29.
Dr. Maria Trent, lead author of the statement, said a combination of strategies is needed “to begin untangling the thread of racism throughout the fabric of our society, and to improve the health of all children.”
“While progress has been made toward racial equality, the impact of racism on communities of color is wide-reaching, systemic and complex,” Trent said.
Researchers cited work out of the Brookings Institution that shows children in Black, Hispanic, and American Indian communities “continue to face higher risks of parental unemployment and to reside in families with significantly lower household net wealth relative to white children in the United States.”
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommended doctors prioritize culturally competent care with families and staff members, advocate for implicit bias training and tap community leaders to create safe playgrounds and healthy food markets.
The group also encouraged pediatricians to advocate for social justice policies and collaborate with police and first responders to trade expertise on how differences in culture, gender, and background affect mental health and development.
Check out my video on the situation: