Online Program

Racial concordance within the context of the patient-physician relationship and its effect on quality of care for African American patients

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Okechuku Enyia, MPH, College of Health Sciences, Chicago State University, Chicago, IL
Racial and ethnic disparities in the quality of health care have been extensively documented and it has been suggested that cultural competence on the part of health care providers and organizations may be one mechanism to reduce racial and ethnic disparities in care. The theory underlying studies of patient-provider racial/ethnic concordance is that if barriers related to race and ethnicity impair patient-physician relationships and result in worse outcomes, then one might observe better outcomes when patient and physician are interacting within racial/ethnic bounda A meta-analysis approach was used: electronic databases, current journals, and bibliographies of relevant articles were gathered. Studies were considered in scope if they discussed cultural differences or racial/ethnic concordance within the context of the patient-physician relationship. Although African American physicians account for less than 5% of the total U.S. physician workforce, they serve as regular healthcare providers for 23% of African American patients. It was found that African Americans were more satisfied with their care from African American physicians than non-African American physicians over several measures of satisfaction. While serving as a minority physician may not guarantee full engagement with a minority patient, the idea of caring for one's own has been well documented in the literature. Curriculum programs designed to enhance the clinician's ability to provide care for African American patients would do well to supplement state-of-the-art clinical training with cultural competency.

Learning Areas:

Clinical medicine applied in public health
Diversity and culture

Learning Objectives:
Define and discuss racial concordance and cultural competency within the context of the patient-physician relationship

Keyword(s): Cultural Competency, Quality of Care

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: As an MPH student, my passion is to contribute to the field particularly with respect to health disparities within the context of the patient-physician relationship.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.