For Black Americans, Covid-19 is another brutal reminder of the racist legacy of the American healthcare system. A disproportionate number of the 500,000 Americans who have died of coronavirus are Black. Yet African Americans and other people of color have struggled to access vaccines.
Racism corrupts every facet of the US healthcare system. Discriminatory practices barred the entry of Black candidates into medical, nursing, dental, pharmacy and other professional healthcare programs. Segregated medical facilities and unjust treatment within medical facilities continue to plague Black patients.
Two recent examples illustrate these failures. David Bell, a 39-year-old public safety worker, died in the parking lot of Barnes-Jewish hospital, in a suburb of St Louis, Missouri, after visiting the emergency department on three occasions complaining of chest pains, and being sent away with ibuprofen.
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