Top JAMA Editor on Vacation in Fallout Over Racism Podcast

H.oward Bauchner, editor-in-chief of JAMAwas put on administrative leave yesterday (March 25) as criticism continued to be heard of the way the leading medical journal has discussed racism in medicine.

Earlier this month, Twitter broke out in criticism of a podcast episode published by JAMA and a related tweet. The tweet, which has since been deleted, partially read: “No doctor is racist. So how can structural racism arise in healthcare? An explanation of the idea by doctors for doctors. . . Ed Livingston is moderating the February 24 podcast episode, which has also been discontinued JAMAThe assistant editor for clinical reviews and education said, “Structural racism is an unfortunate term.” MedPage today. “Personally, I think it will be helpful to take racism out of the conversation. Many of us are offended by the concept that we are racist. ”

Under JAMACritic was Aletha Maybank, the chief equity officer of the American Medical Association, which published JAMA (The magazine has editorial independence). In a number of TweetsMaybank called the tweet and episode “absolutely appalling” and “a demonstration of structural and institutional racism”. The AMA issued a statement on March 4 condemning the tweet and episode, and Bauchner posted his own Explanation on the same day apologized for both. Bauchner also stated that the journal would publish one or more additional podcast episodes discussing structural racism and health.

A petition that started following the statements and has so far been signed by almost 7,000 people says in part: “The transmission of messages indicating that racism does not exist in the medical field and is therefore unproblematic is both for our under-represented minors Doctors served as well for the marginalized harmful communities in this country. “The petition calls JAMA do more to counter racism, including a “formal review of leadership by Dr. Howard Bauchner as Editor-in-Chief ”and hiring an assistant editor to work on anti-racism and health justice.

On March 10, AMA CEO James Madara announced that Bauchner has requested and received Livingston’s resignation and that “the AMA is investigating the circumstances that led to the podcast and tweet and will make the necessary changes to address them. ”

According to The New York TimesBauchner’s administrative leave was communicated to journalists by email. In his absence, an AMA committee will investigate the podcast incident. “The decision to put the editor-in-chief on administrative leave does not imply or exonerate individuals and is the standard practice for such investigations,” the committee said in a statement, the AP reports.

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