It is a difficult time to witness the outrage of the ravaged and disenfranchised communities of color and the long-standing, systemic oppression of Black people in the US. I find my clinical day job as a radiation oncologist exceptionally fulfilling—supporting, advocating for, and treating men with prostate cancer. What led me to this specialty and disease-site specialization was the firsthand observation that Black men in the US suffer the highest incidence of prostate cancer globally and have a death rate twice that of White men,1 and the apparent ignorance of or apathy about these disparities that I perceived during my training. Yet, the recent health disparities and inequities during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic and the blatant racial and social injustices that have caused multiple Black lives to be unnecessarily killed before our eyes have also affirmed my passion and call to workforce diversity as a means to address health equity.
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Deville C. The Suffocating State of Physician Workforce Diversity: Why “I Can’t Breathe”. JAMA Intern Med. Published online August 31, 2020. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2020.3815
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