ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — A medical watchdog group is criticizing Illinois’ new law that requires health-care workers to take racial bias training over “being a good doctor.”
According to the Illinois Administrative Code, racial bias occurs automatically and unintentionally, affecting behaviors, judgments, and decisions.
The medical watchdog group Do No Harm counters that “There is no credible evidence that physicians are biased, or healthcare is systemically racist.”
Illinois passed the Health Care and Human Services Reform Act, which went into effect on January 1st, 2023, requiring health professionals to take one hour of “implicit bias training” in order to renew their license with the state.
The legislation “recognized significant disparities in health outcomes between Black Illinois residents and other residents of the state, including higher rates of death from pregnancy-related causes, cardiovascular disease, cancer, and chronic diseases (including asthma); a higher rate of adverse childhood experiences (ACEs), which is associated with adverse health outcomes.”
“Things that are related to diversity, equity, and inclusion are based on more divisive ideology than things that really have anything to do with being a good doctor,” wrote Laura Morgan, program manager for Do No Harm, who said she was fired from her Texas nursing job after 39 years for refusing to take a mandatory course “grounded in the idea that I’m racist because I’m white.”
“The idea of implicit bias is grounded in the belief that white people treat those who aren’t white worse than those who are. It’s part of the woke assumption that society, including healthcare, suffers from ‘systemic racism,'” she wrote. “Accordingly, my own supposed implicit bias, which is a euphemism for ingrained racism, must be rooted out. Not only that, it must be replaced with preferential treatment for the nonwhite. “
“Patients, especially minorities, will experience the most harm. Their caregivers are being told to admit to unconscious racism. Why would you see a physician who supposedly hates you and will hurt your health?” she said.
“I fear every healthcare professional will soon be forced to make the same awful decision I did: Falsely admit to being racist or abandon the medical field,” she wrote in an article published in the Wall Street Journal.
According to a 2017 Harvard study, diversity training programs may actually worsen healthcare situations by exacerbating pre-existing biases.