Bias in Healthcare

Before you watch We highly recommend you first try our interactive demo "When Does Life Spark in a Face?"

Medical experts want to treat everyone equally, but implicit bias can shape their treatment recommendations. Learn how doctors can subvert their bias to make medical treatment equitable.

References

Goyal, M. K., Kuppermann, N., Cleary, S. D., Teach, S. J., & Chamberlain, J. M. (2015). Racial disparities in pain management of children with appendicitis in emergency departments. JAMA pediatrics, 169(11), 996-1002.

Hackel, L. M., Looser, C. E., & Van Bavel, J. J. (2014). Group membership alters the threshold for mind perception: The role of social identity, collective identification, and intergroup threat. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 52, 15-23.

Hoffman, K. M., Trawalter, S., Axt, J. R., & Oliver, M. N. (2016). Racial bias in pain assessment and treatment recommendations, and false beliefs about biological differences between blacks and whites. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 113(16), 4296-4301.

Krumhuber, E. G., Swiderska, A., Tsankova, E., Kamble, S. V., & Kappas, A. (2015). Real or artificial? Intergroup biases in mind perception in a cross-cultural perspective. PloS one, 10(9), e0137840.

Lee, P., Le Saux, M., Siegel, R., Goyal, M., Chen, C., Ma, Y., & Meltzer, A. C. (2019). Racial and ethnic disparities in the management of acute pain in US emergency departments: meta-analysis and systematic review. The American journal of emergency medicine, 37(9), 1770-1777.

Looser, C. E., & Wheatley, T. (2010). The tipping point of animacy: How, when, and where we perceive life in a face. Psychological science, 21(12), 1854-1862.

Meghani, S. H., Byun, E., & Gallagher, R. M. (2012). Time to take stock: a meta-analysis and systematic review of analgesic treatment disparities for pain in the United States. Pain Medicine, 13(2), 150-174.

Trawalter, S., Hoffman, K. M., & Waytz, A. (2012). Racial bias in perceptions of others’ pain. PloS one, 7(11), e48546.

Credits

“Bias in Healthcare” was created and developed by Olivia Kang, Alex Sanchez, Evan Younger, Caitlyn Finton, and Mahzarin Banaji. Support for Outsmarting Human Minds comes from Harvard University and PwC.

Narration by Olivia Kang.

Animation and Editing by Evan Younger.

Images by Olivia Kang and Evan Younger, and adapted via Unsplash.

Music by Terry Devine-King, John Ashton Thomas, and Philip Guyler via Audio Network.

© 2021 President and Fellows of Harvard College