Doctors training is racist as it warns of patients turning blue

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Doctors’ training ‘is racist as it warns of patients turning blue’, medical school claims

  • Teaching focuses on how illnesses affect white people, such as ‘turning blue’ Doctors training is racist
  • Students said they felt ill-prepared to treat ethnic minority patients
  • Many students may not see common skin conditions on darker skin tones

Dr Joseph Hartland of Bristol Medical School said many students go through their training without seeing common skin conditions such as eczema in people with darker skin tones

Dr Joseph Hartland of Bristol Medical School said many students go through their training without seeing common skin conditions such as eczema in people with darker skin tones

The way in which doctors are trained is inherently racist, a leading medical school claims.Doctors training is racist

Teaching focuses on how illnesses affect white people – such as advising trainee medics to watch for

a patient to turn blue – the University of Bristol Medical School says.

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But doctors at Bristol noted that symptoms present differently on patients with darker skin.

Backed by the General Medical Council, it is attempting to ‘decolonise’ its curriculum,

with training on spotting unconscious bias.

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Students had expressed concerns that they were left ill-prepared to treat ethnic minority patients.

The school said it will address these discrepancies with a series of practical measures such

as emphasising the diversity of skin tones among patients. Doctors training is racist

The way in which doctors are trained is inherently racist, a leading medical school claims (file photo)

The way in which doctors are trained is inherently racist, a leading medical school claims (file photo)

Students at other medical schools have also called for training to be more inclusive.

Dr Joseph Hartland of Bristol Medical School said many students go through their training

without seeing common skin conditions such as eczema in people with darker skin tones. Doctors training is racist

He told the BBC: ‘Historically, medical education was designed and written by white middle-

class men, and so there is an inherent racism in medicine that means it exists to serve white patients above all others.’

He added: ‘We are teaching students how to recognise a life-or-death clinical sign largely

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in white people, and not acknowledging these differences may be dangerous.’

Dr Joseph Hartland of Bristol Medical School (pictured) said many students go through their training without seeing common skin conditions such as eczema in people with darker skin tones

Dr Joseph Hartland of Bristol Medical School (pictured) said many students go through their training without seeing common skin conditions such as eczema in people with darker skin tones

The Medical Schools Council has already started working with universities to diversify subjects.

It will also aim to boost support for people coping with racism.Doctors training is racist

The council’s Dr Clare Owen told the BBC: ‘It is vital that not only should the profession represent

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our diverse population but it should also understand the unique health differences in our various communities.’

The GMC said it would work with medical schools on guidance including ‘ethnically diverse presentations’.

It wants to be active ‘in driving change that is real and effective in support of black and minority

ethnic students, trainees, doctors and patients in the UK’, it was reported.

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