Examining implicit bias of physicians who care for individuals with spinal cord injury: a pilot study and future directions

Short Title:
Examining implicit bias of physicians who care for individuals with spinal cord injury: a pilot study and future directions
Model System:
SCI
Reference Type:
Journal Article
Accession No.:
J70880
Journal:
Journal of Spinal Cord Medicine
Year, Volume, Issue, Page(s):
2015, vol. 1, issue 38, pp 102-110
Publication Website:
Abstract:
Study examined the implicit racial bias among physicians caring for individuals with spinal cord injury (SCI) and its association with functioning and wellbeing for individuals with SCI. Data were collected from 162 individuals with SCI and 14 of their SCI physicians from 4 national SCI Model Systems sites. SCI physicians completed online surveys measuring implicit racial (pro-white/anti-black) bias. Individuals with SCI completed questionnaires assessing mobility, physical independence, occupational functioning, social integration, self-reported health, depression, and life satisfaction. Multilevel regression analyses were used to examine the associations of physician bias and outcomes of individuals with SCI. Results showed that physicians had a mean bias score of 0.62, indicating a strong pro-white/anti-black bias. Greater physician bias was associated with disability among individuals with SCI in the domain of social integration, as well as higher depression and lower life satisfaction. This pilot study indicates that SCI providers are susceptible to implicit racial bias and provides preliminary evidence that greater implicit racial bias of physicians is associated with poorer psychosocial health outcomes for individuals with SCI. It demonstrates the feasibility of studying implicit bias among SCI providers and provides guidance for future research on physician bias and patient outcomes
Author(s):
Victorson D, Tulsky DS, Kisala PA, Kalpakjian CZ, Weiland B, Choi SW.
Author Address(es):

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