AMA acknowledges harmful past, launches road map to propel health equity

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The American Medical Association launched a three-year road map to aggressively push toward health equity and embed racial justice within the organization, as well as acknowledge how previous policies have harmed minorities and marginalized groups.

A May news release said the AMA believes that to fulfill its mission in promoting medicine and improve public health, it couldn't ignore current health inequities.

The five strategic approaches to health equity and social justice:

Embed racial and social justice in AMA enterprise, culture, systems, policies and practices:

  • The AMA will build the capacity to understand and operationalize anti-racism strategies through training and tool development. 

  • The AMA will also ensure equitable structures and accountability in its workforce, contracts, budgeting, communications and publishing. 

  • It will integrate trauma-informed lenses and approaches.

  • It will assess organizational change over time.

Build alliances with historically marginalized and minoritized physicians, as well as other stakeholders:

  • The AMA will develop structures and processes consistent with the experiences and ideas of historically minoritized and marginalized groups, such as LGBTQ+ people, women, people with disabilities and people of color.

  • The road map will establish a coalition of multidisciplinary equity experts in healthcare and public health to advocate for social justice in healthcare.

Ensure equitable structures and opportunities in innovation:

  • The AMA will embed racial justice and health equity within existing healthcare innovation efforts and will equip the healthcare innovation sector to advance health equity and justice.

  • The AMA will focus on historically marginalized minority healthcare investors and innovators.

  • It will engage in cross-sector collaboration and advocacy efforts.

Push upstream to address determinants of health and root causes of inequalities:

  • The strategy will strengthen physicians' knowledge of public health, as well as structural and social drivers of health inequities.

  • It will empower physicians and health systems to dismantle structural racism and systems of oppression.

  • The AMA will equip physicians and health systems to improve services, technology, partnership and payment models that advance public health and equity.

Foster pathways for truth, racial healing, reconciliation and transformation for AMA's past:

  • The AMA will amplify narratives of historically marginalized physicians and patients that were previously not celebrated.

  • It will quantify the effects of AMA's policies and decisions that have excluded, discriminated and harmed.

  • The road map will repair and cultivate a healing journey from those harms.

To read the full strategic approach, click here.

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