Intersections of Race, Ethnicity, and Medicine

Medicine has long used race and ethnicity as proxies for physical and sociocultural characteristics associated with groups of people, based on their ancestry in Europe, Africa, or Asia. And there is strong evidence that physicians treat members of these groups in different ways, contributing to documented disparities in health status among members of different races and ethnicities. Moreover, the self-identified race of a person is a sound predictor of his or her health and lifespan. This month's contributors explain the possible benefits and harms of using race and ethnicity in medical research and patient care.

Volume 16, Number 6: 417-519 Full Issue PDF