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Racism & Healthcare

A not-so-secret history of violence

The foundations of systemic racism

Chattel Slavery


  • European colonizers brought Chattel Slavery officially in 1619
  • This U.S. economy flourished on the labor of people enslaved by race
  • Many sought to justify & perpetuate slavery through medicine

Thomas Jefferson 3rd President of the United StatesPrimary author of The Declaration of Independence

"I advance it therefore, as a suspicion only, that blacks ...are inferior to the whites in the endowments of body and mind"


Race did not exist in common vernacular until the European colonialization of America. Doctors such as Samuel Cartwright published papers which noted physical maladies and inferiorities to justify slavery which still influence medical diagnostics today.


Slavery could legally be passed through generations by partus sequitir ventrum. Especially after the African slave trade became illegal in 1807 slave owners and their doctors raped and assaulted enslaved people to increase the number of people they controlled.


A lot of current medical knowledge comes from research of doctors on enslaved people and other Black Americans without their free and knowing consent. This research affects modern day mortality rates of POC patients. Additionally, doctors traded black bodies for medical schools and museums.

Not yet


Does it really mean Freedom?

13th Ammendment to the U.S. Constitution

"Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction."


Henrietta Lacks

Tuskegee Syphilis Study

› Sheppard-Towner Act

› Jim Crow & the Hills-Burton Act

Access to Care

› Reconstruction & Independence

› Civil Rights & Planned Parenthood


Black Lives Matter


No effective universal healthcare exists & POC still suffer economically making them most vulnerable

The system still holds onto many of its racist practices and suffers from a lack of diversity.


Black Lives Matter

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