I have decided to do a monthly Must Read Monday book instead of weekly.
June’s Must Read book selection is Black Man in a White Coat: A Doctor’s Reflections on Race and Medicine written by Damon Tweedy M.D.
Dr. Damon took me on a journey in this profound book about becoming a doctor. He was honest about his own biases that he struggled with which I think is commendable. Dr. Damon discussed the guilt that many black people face that come from impoverished neighborhoods. Oftentimes we have to grapple with the reality that we made it out and currently living a different life from those that we grew up with. I recommend this book if you want to know more about health disparities in communities of color and poor communities then this book is for you.
This book is inspirational and enlightening. One of my favorite quotes in the book is about Dr. Damon’s relationship with a patient named Keith that he thought he would never have anything in common with. Dr. Damon states, “It is up to us, as doctors, to find the commonalities and respect the differences between us and our patients. In that way, we can understand what they value, how best to communicate with them, and how to arrive at treatment plans that improve their health while respecting their wishes. This approach is often called cultural competence, but after years of medical practice, it seems to me more like common sense”(Damon, 2015, p. 245). I would take this statement even further and state that we need to practice cultural humility. Having an open mind and having humility about the various people that we encounter is key.
Please let me know your thoughts on the book.