Light is shed on the systemic barriers that prevent black men from becoming medical doctors in a free documentary screening coming to Dayton.
“Why is it easier to visualize a black man wearing an orange jumpsuit than a white lab coat? This is the provocative question posed by the filmmakers of “Black Men in White Coats,” stated a Dayton Metro Library press release.
Dayton Metro Library will host an online screening of the documentary from noon on Thursday., Feb. 18 through noon on Sunday, Feb. 21. Registration is required and participation will be limited to the first 300 people who register at indiescreening.com/screenings/139.
Registered viewers will receive a unique code that can be used to watch the film on their computer or device during that time.
“In researching this film, it became clear to me that it really aligns with the library’s strategic priorities to support both career development and community equity,” said Julie Buchanan, DML’s Programming Manager. “It’s shocking that there are fewer black men applying to med school now than there were in the 1970s.”
In 2013, the Association of American Medical Colleges reported that the already low number of black male applicants to medical school was decreasing, according to the release. Dr. Dale Okorodudu, physician and founder of DiverseMedicine Inc., responded by partnering with medical schools across the country to produce short documentary videos to bring awareness to the issue.
“It’s difficult for young black men to see themselves in the medical field when there are so few role models,” Buchanan said. “This lack of representation, coupled with unconscious bias, has negative impacts on health outcomes for patients of color.”
The documentary, which premieres on Feb. 8, is the culmination of Okorodudu’s efforts. It explores how health care, the national economy and the overall well-being of citizens everywhere would benefit if the medical workforce better reflected the diversity of the population.
The “Black Men in White Coats” trailer is available to watch at trailer.bmwcmovie.com. For more information on the screening, visit DaytonMetroLibrary.org or call 937-463-2665.
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