Healthcare reform has become the Civil Rights issue of the 21st century. Americans are talking about disparities, access to healthcare, and equal access to healthcare. Yet what good does it do if you reform the healthcare system, and people of color are still denied quality care?
What exactly does it mean to reform healthcare? Who makes the decision, and are people of color involved in that decision-making process? People talk about “disparities,” but disparities is a big word. I find it to be a smokescreen. People are afraid to follow the smoke and go to the fire—and the fire is racism. It’s difficult just to get healthcare professionals to admit that there’s racism in healthcare, despite all of the uncontestable research documented in everything from the National Institute of Health to the Commonwealth Fund to the Agency for Health Research Quality to the Schulman Report. The real, ugly truth that healthcare must face is that these disparities are just a symptom; the real disease is racism.
We ask you to join us to help complete the film, The Deadliest Disease in America. Walk with us as we journey across America, to bring to the table all the stakeholders in the issue of healthcare reform. Are you brave enough to be able to look at the racism in healthcare, and then to look at the racism within your own heart? Do you have the courage to take a stand? We are on the frontier of a revolutionary time in American history. The Deadliest Disease and its accompanying workshops will be a part of that change through a national civic engagement tour. There’s an African proverb: “It takes a village to raise a child.” We invite you to join this village.
Our tour seeks to change the DNA of this diseased system. It will reach healthcare consumers, community-based advocates, policy-makers and healthcare professionals in fifty different cities. The mix of workshops for each locale will be individualized according to the organic issues existing in each city/community. National television and Internet distribution will reach the general public.
We will actively recruit stakeholders from multiple segments of the community so there is real dialogue that results in targeted solutions for concrete change.
This blog will be updated each Wednesday, as part of a broader online campaign to link documentary viewers and workshop participants with opportunities to get involved with The Deadliest Disease.
Please visit our website (www.urutherighttobe.org) for more information.
Follow us as we test the post-election waters and go about making change a reality.
Producer/Director/Writer, The Deadliest Disease in America