Nobody would be surprised to find out that racial stereotypes are still a reality in the United States. However, these are present even in higher institutions, or in places where it should be moral for everybody to be treated the same. A recent study discovered white and Asian-American babies received better care in Californian NICUs than babies of a different ethnicity.
The study was developed by researchers from Stanford University School of Medicine. They monitored the newborn care offered in 134 hospitals from California between 2010 and 2014. In the end, the study looked at almost 19,000 infants.
White babies receive the best care in NICUs
They scored the quality of the care these babies had received, and noticed a discrepancy among races. White babies were looked after the best, and they were closely followed by Asian-Americans. On the other hand, African American infants scored slightly lower. The differences were even higher for Hispanics, Alaska natives, or American Indian babies, who had been receiving care of a significantly poorer quality.
Researchers considered a series of factors which could influence the quality of the care they had received, and their overall condition. They looked if doctors gave the infants steroids for a quicker maturation of the lungs, if they contracted infections, if they received an eye examination, or how quickly they grew.
The racial differences are not uniform, but are relevant
However, these disparities were not present in all hospitals studied. Overall, African-American babies grew faster, and some units even treated them better than other babies. However, those hospitals which usually offer better medical services showed a clear predilection for white babies.
Some medical officials have noticed these differences, and are trying to fight them. Racial stereotypes are deeply rooted in the subconscious of many Americans, and some might treat patients differently without even realizing. However, they support the fight against these disparities, and want to offer the same care for everybody.
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