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The Diversity Snowball Effect: The Quest to Increase Diversity in Emergency Medicine: A Case Study of Highland's Emergency Medicine Residency Program

      Blacks, Hispanics/Latinos, American Indians, Pacific Islanders, Alaska Natives, and Native Hawaiians make up 33% of the US population. These same groups are underrepresented in medicine. In 2013, the physician workforce was 4.1% black, 4.4% Hispanic/Latino, 0.4% American Indian or Alaska Native, 11.7% Asian, and 48.9% white. Only 9.9% of emergency physicians identify as underrepresented minority (4.5% black, 4.8% Hispanic/Latino, and 0.6% American Indian/Alaska Native). Efforts to increase the number of underrepresented minority physicians are important because previous studies show improved outcomes when the patient and physician share the same racial/ethnic background. Starting in 2006, the faculty at the Highland EM Residency Program in Oakland, CA, began a diversification initiative to increase the number of underrepresented minority residents. The goal was to closely mirror the US population and match 30% underrepresented minorities with each incoming class. After the initiative, there was a 2-fold increase in the number of underrepresented minority residents (from 12% to 27%). This article is a review of the strategies used to diversify the Highland EM Residency Program. Most components can be applied across emergency medicine programs to increase the number of underrepresented minority residents and potentially improve health outcomes for diverse populations.
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      Linked Article

      • Additional Strategies for Underrepresented Minority Recruitment
        Annals of Emergency MedicineVol. 75Issue 2
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          We congratulate Garrick et al1 on their study detailing the Highland Emergency Medicine Residency Program’s efforts to increase their number of underrepresented minority residents. We at the Cook County Health Emergency Medicine Residency Program would like to present strategies that increased our recruitment of underrepresented residents.
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