Intended for healthcare professionals


Black US doctor is fired after complaint about talk on racism in medicine

BMJ 2021; 372 doi: (Published 13 January 2021) Cite this as: BMJ 2021;372:n116
  1. Jeanne Lenzer
  1. New York

A doctor has been fired from her “dream job” as a small group facilitator at a medical school in California after she shared personal and historical incidents of racism during a talk with students.

Aysha Khoury, a 42 year old internist, was hired in July 2019 by Kaiser Permanente School of Medicine in Pasadena, which opened in 2020, does not charge fees, and encourages applications from students from diverse backgrounds. She was particularly excited about the school’s focus on “achieving equity,” the “elimination of health disparities,” and the promotion of “inclusiveness and diversity,” she said.

Khoury was asked to facilitate a discussion about “legacies of power structures and institutionalised racism that result in gender bias and race bias in medicine today” for a class held in August 2020. She has said that she “decided to show up fully as a Black woman and physician,” wearing “a T shirt with the words …

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