August 27, 2020

Black Lives. Patient Experience

Though we live in a time of significant advances in the diagnosis and treatment of chronic diseases, there is mounting evidence that racial and ethnic minorities tend to receive lower quality of care than non-minorities.

The Institute of Medicine (IOM) report on unequal treatment concluded “racial and ethnic disparities in health care exist and, because they are associated with worse outcomes in many cases, are unacceptable.”

At Michigan Medicine, the Office of Patient Experience (OPE) continually searches out diverse patient and family voices to share their stories, experiences, opinions and perspectives in order to champion initiatives that help create more patient-centric programs, operations and research, and improve safety and quality. 

To better understand the perspectives of patients that have had experiences that may have been impacted by race, OPE partnered with patient and family advisors to share their stories as Black patients and family members at Michigan Medicine. Advisors spoke about their personal experience on a recently produced video, Black Patient Experience.

“It’s scary when you fear for your life going into the hospital, as well as feeling like you’re going to be rejected or feeling like you’re not going to be saved,” said Heather Avant, patient advisor.