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At this November 2021 Special Meeting of the House of Delegates (HOD), delegates and alternate delegates will have multiple opportunities to expand and deepen their understanding of health equity and racial justice. This page includes links to curated health equity educational content from trusted sources, which will help HOD members understand how systems of power, structures (laws/policies), systems and institutional policies and practices impact us all.

AMA Equity Plan 2021-2023

Embedding equity into medicine requires planning and honesty. To meet this moment, the AMA has developed a plan to advance racial and social justice.

In addition, a Health Equity Forum will be held for HOD members on Sunday, Nov. 14 from 1-4 p.m. Central. During this forum, HOD members will have the opportunity to engage with national experts including staff from the AMA's Center for Health Equity to learn more about the AMA's work to embed racial justice and advance health equity.

Additional opportunities for education and discussion on these topics are provided on this page. Every individual has a role in disrupting and dismantling systems that produce harm as well as find ways to reimagine and rebuild these systems to ensure justice, compassion and equitable care. You can do your part by gaining knowledge and learning skills to advance equity across the health system. 

As part of the AMA’s commitment to dismantling health inequities, improving health outcomes and closing gaps in health care, the AMA Center for Health Equity has been working with internal and external stakeholders to develop high quality education to embed racial justice and advance equity across health care. An overarching goal of the content is to help learners better understand how systems of power, structures, policies and practices impact us all.

The health equity education featured on the AMA Ed Hub™ Health Equity Education Center and curated by the AMA’s Center for Health Equity will equip physicians, physicians in training and other learners with core health equity concepts needed to support them as they continue to take action and confront health injustice. These and other equity-related activities were developed by the AMA’s Center for Health Equity and additional collaborating organizations, such as the American College of Radiology (ACR), Stanford Medicine, Howard Brown Health, SAGECare, The Fenway Institute, and COVID Black.

New health equity-related activities are scheduled for release throughout the remainder of 2021 and beyond.

Nov. 14, 2021 1-4 p.m. Central

The Health Equity Forum will begin with a fireside chat with Heather McGhee, JD, author of The Sum of Us: What Racism Costs Everyone and How We Can Prosper Together. This will be followed by a moderated conversation about the AMA’s Strategic Plan to Embed Racial Justice and Advance Health Equity with well-known, respected equity experts and scholars. This session will give HOD members the opportunity to discuss the equity plan, highlighting themes such as equity as expertise, the importance and evolution of language and concepts, an explanation of meritocracy and critical race theory, and the opportunity and impact AMA has in centering equity as a strategy. The forum will conclude with an opportunity for HOD members to engage directly with staff from the Center for Health Equity to hear more about their work. 

Visit the forum agenda page for the full agenda and speakers' bios.

These additional sessions will be presented by AMA sections/groups. Visit the education sessions page for additional information.

  • Racial diversity in the academic physician supply chain—sponsored by Academic Physicians Section (APS)
  • Breaking the script–Improving end-of-life care communication for seniors and LGBTQ elders— sponsored by Senior Physician Section (SPS)
  • Structural drivers of inequities in medicine: Personal experiences across the profession—Friday, Nov. 12, noon Central. Sponsored by Young Physicians Section (SPS).

At the Annual House of Delegates (HOD) meeting in June of 2018, the Health Equity Task Force presented a report “Plan for Continued Progress Toward Health Equity D-180.981” to the AMA House of Delegates Board. This report, which was adopted as AMA policy, included a recommendation to develop an organizational unit to coordinate health equity activities. This led to the establishment and launch of the AMA Center for Health Equity and the hiring of the first Chief Health Equity Officer, Aletha Maybank, MD, MPH, in 2019.

In June 2020, the AMA Board of Trustees acknowledged racism as a public health threat and pledged to dismantle racism across the entire health care system.

Policy adopted by physicians at the AMA's November 2020 Special Meeting of the (HOD) opposes all forms of racism as a threat to public health and calls on AMA to take prescribed steps to combat racism, including:

  1. Acknowledging the harm caused by racism and unconscious bias within medical research and health care
  2. Identifying tactics to counter racism and mitigate its health effects
  3. Encouraging medical education curricula to promote a greater understanding of the topic
  4. Supporting external policy development and funding for researching racism’s health risks and damages
  5. Working to prevent influences of racism and bias in health technology innovation

The Strategic Plan to Embed Racial Justice and Advance Health Equity serves as a three-year roadmap to plant the initial seeds for action and accountability.

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