An effort by the American Medical Association (AMA) to go fully woke has prompted one physician to form an alternative organization to represent the professional interests of physicians.
Julio Gonzales, M.D., J.D. told the Heartland Daily Podcast on September 2 he was appalled and shocked when he read the AMA’s 86-page document outlining the organization’s woke initiative, entitled Organizational Strategic Plan to Embed Racial Justice and Advanced Health Equity.
“I took three messages from this: all doctors are racists, whether we know about it or not. Second, the disparities are our fault. And third, I was really impressed with the fact that they nuanced Communist parlance into health care,” said Gonzalez. “They were rephrasing terminology used by Karl Marx to apply it to health care disparities.
Gonzales, a son of Cuban immigrants, a former naval flight surgeon, and a former Florida State Representative filed paperwork to form the “United States Medical Association (USMA),” with a goal of having its first convention by November of 2022 (details to be released on centerforhealthcarepolicy solutions.com). One of his first orders of business was to write an open letter to the AMA regarding its woke plan.
“Seldom have I read a more destructive, divisive, and inflammatory document by a professional organization, and I have never been more ashamed of being associated with the American Medical Association at any time in my career,” wrote Gonzales.
AMA Turns Left
The AMA claims to be the largest professional association of physicians in the U.S. but it is not clear whether this includes members who belong to state medical associations which are separate organizations.
The national AMA carries a lot of power because it owns the Current Procedural Terminology code set, a system that determines what Medicare ultimately pays for doctors and medical services. Royalties paid to the AMA for use of the system amounted to $148 million, according to Paddockpost.com, 47 percent of the AMA’s reported total revenue.
The AMA’s march leftward became evident in 2020, when its board stated, “racism is a public health threat” and pledged “to dismantle racism across the entire health care system.” This year, the AMA asked two of its journal editors to leave after questioning the use of the word “racism” in discussions trying to address health care disparities in health care.
The Organizational Strategic Plan to Embed Racial Justice and Advanced Health Equity was written over a two-year period by a dedicated staff of 16 people and dozens of contributors. It uses much of the parlance of critical race theory and lists a number of directives and health policies with some going beyond the scope of medical practice.
For example, on the incarceration of convicted criminals, the plan states the AMA should support “the ability of transgender prisoners to be placed in facilities if they so choose, that [is] reflective of their affirmed gender status, regardless of the prisoner’s genitalia.” Other recommendations fall in line with woke narrative, such as the AMA should work to “repair and cultivate a healing journey for those who have been harmed.”
Gonzales, whose parents arrived in the U.S. in 1961 before he was born, was sensitive to his multi-cultural backgrounds but he endured.
“I always had goals, my goals were ones I wanted to pursue, and I pursued them with great zeal,” said Gonzales. “
Marilyn Singleton, M.D., J.D, who describes herself as “American. Black. Doctor: Uncensored” on her website, says there were 12 women in her medical school class of 135 and she recalls more anti-female sentiment than racial discrimination.
Singleton and Gonzales don’t deny racism exists but believe the old adage that success is the best revent. They never doubted their ability to overcome bias
“The surgeons knew me and my skills and trusted me – gender and color aside,” said Singleton. “Microaggressions are in the eye of the beholder. ‘They threw a pebble, and you see a rock.’ Why are people so self-centered that they think all actions by another person are about themselves. Maybe the other person was ugly to everybody that day.
Highly Disruptive Rhetoric
Gonzales says the AMA’s efforts to address past injustices will be divisive.
“They are delivering the message to the general public, our leaders and to anyone who will listen (that) your doctor is inherently racist,” said Gonzales. “It’s a lie and highly disruptive to the doctor-patient relationship. It builds distrust.”
Medicine has to look at the whole picture and every patient should be treated with respect, says Singleton.
“If people are told to be so race-aware constantly, they will cease to see people as individual human beings. Worse, they will resent the mental stress of being afraid to tell a black person they are overweight and not to eat so much fried food. That is not disrespecting their “culture” — just good medicine,” said Singleton.
AnneMarie Schieber (email@example.com) is the managing editor of Health Care News.