Sun M, Oliwa T, Peek M, et al. Negative Patient Descriptors: Documenting Racial Bias In The Electronic Health Record. HealthAffairs, January 19, 2022. https://doi.org/10.1377/hlthaff.2021.01423
We found that Black patients at an urban academic medical center had disproportionately higher odds of negative patient descriptors appearing in the history and physical notes of their EHRs compared with White patients. This difference may indicate implicit racial bias not only among individual providers but also among the broader beliefs and attitudes maintained by the health care system. Such bias has the potential to stigmatize Black patients and possibly compromise their care, raising concerns about systemic racism in health care.