Radical politics infect medicine
| NATIONAL REVIEW – In her dissent in Students for Fair Admissions v. Harvard and UNC, which struck down racial-preference admissions schemes at these schools, Supreme Court justice Ketanji Brown Jackson lamented the majority’s failure to see how “health gaps” have tracked the financial disparities bequeathed by America’s legacy of racial discrimination.
She likewise faulted the majority for not seeing affirmative action as a way to address these disparities.
“Beyond campus, the diversity that UNC pursues for the betterment of its students and society is not a trendy slogan. It saves lives,” she wrote.
As an example, she claimed that, “for high-risk Black newborns, having a Black physician more than doubles the likelihood that the baby will live, and not die.”
There’s just one problem: It’s not true.
The citation on which she relies refers to an amicus brief filed in the case by the Association of American Medical Colleges, which argues that “for high-risk Black newborns, having a Black physician is tantamount to a miracle drug: it more than doubles the likelihood that the baby will live.”
[This claim does not even make mathematical sense. The black infant mortality rate is reportedly 10.8 deaths per 1,000 live births, a survival rate of 98.9%. It is mathematically impossible to double any survival rate that exceeds 50 percent. – HH]
That brief itself cites a study titled “Physician–Patient Racial Concordance and Disparities in Birthing Mortality for Newborns,” which uses census data to measure mortality rates for black newborns in Florida between 1992 and 2015.
The study’s actual finding, far more modest than what the brief made of it, was that the number of black infants who died while being treated by a black physician was less than half the number of black infants who died while being treated by a white physician.
But in both cases the number of infants was a very small percentage of the total. The survival rate — what Jackson’s opinion refers to — remained above 99 percent for black infants in both groups … READ MORE.