Massachusetts Medical Society Treating Racism as Public-Health Crisis

WALTHAM — The Massachusetts Medical Society (MMS), supporting more than 25,000 physicians in the Commonwealth, has recognized racism as a public-health crisis and has convened an expert panel to address and combat healthcare-related issues caused by structural racism.

Further, the medical society committed to being an antiracist organization and will work to promote equity and racial justice by prioritizing antiracism in its policies, strategic plan, governance, and activities.

In support of this effort, MMS President Dr. David Rosman assembled an antiracism advisory group within the society, which provides counsel in and guidance toward the formation and implementation of the organization’s Antiracism Action Plan.

“The Massachusetts Medical Society views healthcare as an inalienable human right, and for far too long injustice and racism in myriad forms has interfered with that right, which has led us into an inexcusable public-health crisis that causes illness and premature death for our black and brown patients,” Rosman said. “Our pointed aim is to correct this and, as importantly and simultaneously, address all forms of racism that affect patients, physicians, and our colleagues in the healthcare workforce.”

The Antiracism Action Plan stresses engagement and support of minority physicians at the MMS; support and resources for underrepresented minorities in medicine who face abuses and discrimination in their institutions, practices, and places of work; addressing racism and reducing racial inequities affecting patients and public health; and educating physicians and the membership at large about racism.