Road Map for Anti-racism

The “Road Map for Anti-racism in Health Care” article (Fall/Winter 2020 issue) was of great interest and importance. I wondered, though, why, among the many inspiring initiatives and recommendations listed, there was no mention of advocacy for a system of publicly funded universal health care. Change to such a system would, in and of itself, address not only many of the health care problems resulting from racism but many of the other systemic problems signaled in the article by phrases such as “more just society,” “health disparities,” “fully inclusive,” “social injustice,” “foster equity and minimize bias,” “population health,” “inclusion.”

An Occam’s Scalpel, so to speak.

Daniel C. Bryant’65 



The two original hospitalists (Fall/Winter 2020 issue) at NYP are both graduates of the VP&S internal medicine residency program and are still on staff in the Department of Medicine here. One is Dr. Douglas Marratta. I am the other.

Roy Lackey’93



The Fall/Winter 2020 issue of Columbia Medicine describes the founding of the Black and Latino Student Organization (BALSO) at VP&S (“P&S” at that time) in 1972 after a hostile racial slur was found written on the blackboard in a classroom; the incident led to organized sessions to discuss intolerance.

At that time, I was a fourth-year medical student at VP&S (Class of 1973)working in electives in the hospitals at West 168th Street. My first reaction on reading this article was shock, because not only do I not remember any such incident, but also because I recall that the racial atmosphere at VP&S at that time was universally relaxed and mutually cordial.

My second reaction was to wonder whether I had been so wound-up with studying and ward work that I may have completely missed what was going on elsewhere in the school. I also wondered whether I missed it because the administration just did not communicate the event to the rest of the student body.

I feel certain that every one of my classmates whom I knew well would have been outraged if they had heard in 1972 about this racist incident, and they would have been very vocal in their denunciation of it.

Edward Tabor’73