A recent publication in the Journal of Neurology caused significant outrage not only within a forum dedicated to Black doctors and trainees, but also in the medical community online at large. Much like the rest of the readers, I was deeply troubled and did not understand the purpose of the article.
When I first read that the Northam picture came from a medical school yearbook, I thought about whoever might have been his Black classmates at the time.
Thomas Jefferson has said his piece and this time I won’t attempt to say anything back. This time I won’t stay silent either. This time, I’ll write.
On the subjects of disease and disparity, the NIH focuses on the genetic code inside individual bodies and ignores the wider contexts within which these bodies live, work, play and get sick. The NIH overlooks societal inequalities and gives genes too much credit.