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Acad Med. 1992 Jun;67(6):411-2.

First-year students' expectations of interacting with minority patients and colleagues.

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Department of Pediatrics, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota.


In a 1988-89 pilot study, the authors surveyed the first-year medical students at the University of California, Los Angeles, School of Medicine in order to examine the students' expectations regarding future encounters with minority colleagues and patients, and how these expectations related to the students' own race or ethnicity and their perceived levels of experience with various racial-ethnic groups; 89 of 140 students responded (64%). There were significant positive associations between the students' levels of experience working or interacting socially with blacks or Hispanics (regardless of the students' own race or ethnicity) and their perceived likelihood of practicing with black or Hispanic partners, whereas there were significant negative associations between experience with blacks or Hispanics and the perceived likelihood of living in predominantly white communities. Further, the black and Hispanic students expected to have a higher percentage of their patients from black or Hispanic backgrounds than did other students. The authors suggest that these results underscore the importance of evaluating students' experience as well as race or ethnicity when attempting to increase representation of students with a commitment to serve minority populations.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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