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IOM: Workforce Diversity Lacking In Health Care

An Institute of Medicine report sheds some light on race and medicine that all sectors of the health care system must pay attention to.

The report — "In the Nation's Compelling Interest: Ensuring Diversity in the Health Care Workforce" — points out that the health care workforce does not mirror the rest of society's move toward greater ethnic and racial diversity. For instance, Latinos are 12 percent of U.S. residents but 3.5 percent of doctors, 3.4 percent of psychologists, and 2 percent of nurses. And while an eighth of U.S. residents are black, only a twentieth of U.S. physicians and dentists are black.

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