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J Trauma Acute Care Surg. 2019 May 1. doi: 10.1097/TA.0000000000002360. [Epub ahead of print]

#EAST4ALL: An Introduction to the EAST Equity, Quality, and Inclusion Task Force.

Author information

1
Division of Trauma and Surgical Critical Care, Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, Newark, NJ.
2
Section for Trauma and Acute Care Surgery, The University of Chicago Medicine, Chicago, IL.
3
Trauma and Emergency Surgical Service, Scripps Mercy Medical Center, San Diego, CA.
4
Trauma, Emergency Surgery and Surgical Critical Care, Harvard Medical School.
5
Retired Chair of Surgery for the Veteran's Administration Hospital, Fayetteville, NC.
6
Division of Trauma and Surgical Critical Care, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Miami, FL.
7
Trauma and Acute Care Surgery, New York University Winthrop Hospital School of Medicine, Mineola, NY.
8
Division of Acute Care Surgical Services, Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine, Richmond, VA.
9
Trauma, Critical Care, Burn and Emergency Surgery, University of Arizona College of Medicine, Tucson, AZ.
10
Trauma, Acute Care Surgery and Surgical Critical Care, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center School of Medicine, Lubbock, TX.
11
Division of Acute Care Surgery, Trauma, and Surgical Critical Care, University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, KS.
12
Department of Surgery, The John Hopkins University School of Medicine.
13
Acute Care Surgery, Trauma and Surgical Critical Care, University of Kentucky College of Medicine, Lexington, KY.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The Eastern Association for the Surgery of Trauma (EAST) is an inclusive and supportive organization that focuses on development of the junior trauma surgeon. In 2019, there continues to be bias based on gender, race, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation in our profession and society at large. We believe that EAST is uniquely positioned to investigate, quantify/categorize, and search for productive and effective solutions to these issues that affect our colleagues, profession, and patients. The EAST Equity, Quality and Inclusion Task Force, or #EAST4ALL, was thus created, with the goal of addressing these issues together as a community.

METHODS:

A series of Task Force meetings and teleconferences was held to collect subjective and objective data and experiences related to bias and equity issues and experiences. A uniquely structured #EAST4ALL Plenary Session was created to both introduce this initiative and to couple real-world experiential descriptives with related reviews of the relevant literature and the concept of "implicit bias".

RESULTS:

We share anecdotal and evidence-based examples of bias in trauma surgery presented at the inaugural #EAST4ALL Plenary Session along the axes of: i) childbearing & family concerns, ii) micro & macroaggressions, iii) gender, iv) race & ethnicity, iv) religion or country of origin, v) sexual orientation & gender identity. We then share our proposal and suggested courses of action for member-based solutions based on our various workgroups: a) Assessment & Research; b) Education; c) Guidelines & Processes; d) Mentorship, Dialogue & Collaboration.

CONCLUSIONS:

Inequities and bias in the field of trauma surgery may have profound and deleterious impacts, lifelong for some, that we must acknowledge and eradicate. The dignity and respect we afford our patients, must be extended to each other. Our EAST Equity, Quality and Inclusion Task Force, with membership input, hopes to create a future that is truly an #EAST4ALL.

STUDY TYPE:

Original Article LEVEL OF EVIDENCE: Level V.

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