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January 15, 1982

Ethnicity and Medical Care

JAMA. 1982;247(3):359. doi:10.1001/jama.1982.03320280069040

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With recent increases in ethnic heterogeneity and the realization that the United States is not the fabled melting pot, Ethnicity and Medical Care is a timely and much-needed book. Ethnicity is an obvious variable creating barriers to the effective delivery of medical care. Medical researchers have not ignored ethnicity, but, as nearly all the contributors to this volume note, the available data are uneven and provide only a limited exploration of the ethnic view of medicine, health, and well-being. The net effect is that ethnicity remains flat, stereotyped, and a barrier to communication and treatment. Ethnicity and Medical Care rectifies this by presenting ethnicity as a rich variable that has important implications for clinicians and other health care professionals who regularly or occasionally work with patients of different ethnic origin.

Lack of integration is always a hazard in assembling the work of multiple (in this case seven) experts, but the