Inclusiveness. It's not only the right thing to do – it's the smart thing to do.
At The Ohio State University College of Medicine, we believe diversity is more than a good idea or an ideal to strive for. It's a value we uphold with pride. Why? Because we believe in empowering physicians to provide quality health care and compassionate care to everyone.
Studies Prove Diversity in Medicine Matters
- Physicians from underrepresented minority and/or socioeconomically disadvantaged backgrounds are more likely to practice in medically underserved communities.
- Physicians who attend medical schools with diverse student bodies describe themselves as more comfortable treating diverse populations than peers at other schools.
- Minority men are more likely to comply with preventive health recommendations when they are provided by minority physicians.
- Diverse thinkers outperform homogenous groups on complex tasks, resulting in improved problem solving, increased innovation and more accurate predictions.
“Drs. McDougle and Capers both agree – it takes full alignment of purpose and commitment from senior leadership to create a totally integrated academic experience.” Click to tweet this story
Diversity + Inclusion Move Medicine Forward
It's been nearly 40 years since Penchansky and Thomas defined The Five As of Access in their hallmark article, "The Concept of Access: Definition and Relationship to Consumer Satisfaction."
For our College of Medicine faculty, staff and students, Availability, Accessibility, Accommodation, Affordability and Acceptability in health care continue to drive unprecedented breakthroughs at Ohio State.
Leon McDougle, MD, MPH, chief diversity officer and professor of Family Medicine at Ohio State Wexner Medical Center and associate dean for Diversity and Inclusion at The Ohio State University College of Medicine, believes Acceptability is the "A" that drives foundational thinking from a cross-cultural context, ultimately offering better Access through diversity.
We seek to lead, serve and inspire in all we do at Ohio State College of Medicine, as evidenced by our innovative Lead.Serve.Inspire. curriculum. And according to Dr. McDougle, diversity and inclusion are strategic imperatives for two important reasons:
1. Diversity drives excellence and innovation.
Lead. We are committed to reinvesting in underserved communities - and we're willing to focus on impact over income to do so.
A beautifully refurbished Ohio State University Hospital East stands as a tangible commitment to the people of Columbus' diverse near East Side. "It's why I chose to come to Ohio State," Dr. McDougle says.
Serve. We have proved that increased opportunities for underrepresented minorities in the medical professions create increased opportunities for diverse patients.
According to cohort studies, College of Medicine students who came from underserved communities are more likely to serve in similar underserved communities after graduation, enhancing quality health care for all.
Inspire. "Diversity in people drives diversity in ideas, which are integral to the success of our research endeavors and research training programs," says Ginny Baumgardner, MD, PhD, associate dean for Research Education at Ohio State College of Medicine.
As a reflection of the complex diversity and synergy of the human body, each medical team is intentionally diverse and open to new methods. It's a holistic systems approach that not only works - it inspires.
2. Diversity not only improves lives - it saves lives.
Lead. From a public health perspective, diversity is a life-or-death concern. We're serving patient populations more diverse than ever before. And we know understanding and embracing our differences directly correlate to improved patient care and outcomes.
Providing quality health care to everyone - regardless of ability, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, culture, race and ethnicity, as well as socioeconomic and educational experience – is a need that cannot be ignored.
Serve. Increasing our collective cultural competency allows caregivers to communicate more effectively in cross-cultural situations. It not only ties to Availability, Accommodation and Acceptability – it drives Affordability and Access.
When patients need to feel fully seen, heard and understood by their doctors, fears of marginalization may keep them from seeking the care they need. Access to medical professionals from diverse backgrounds increases the potential for empathetic, compassionate care.
Inspire. As medical professionals training the next generation of medical professionals, we know this much to be true: Diversity is a life-or-death imperative.
We're not only committed to improving lives through quality care – we're committed to saving them. A diverse population enriches the educational experience of all our students and trainees, and we know that clinicians from groups underrepresented in medicine and biomedical sciences are key healthcare providers to advancing health equity and eliminating health disparities.