Vital Times 2021 - 82

SPECIAL FEATURES
Physician Anesthesiologists
as Health Equity Leaders
Felipe D. Perez, MD FAAP, Chair, CSA Legislative Affairs Committee
Odinakachukwu Ehie, MD FASA, Chair, CSA JEDI Committee
T
he death of George Floyd on May 25, 2020, and
subsequent social unrest brought to public
consciousness the social inequities that Black
Americans continue to face, decades after the Civil
Rights Movement on the 1960's. At the urging of a host
of resident and early career members, leadership of the
California Society of Anesthesiologists (CSA) responded
in a variety of ways to affirm the injustice of societal
racism and the importance of expanded, inclusive
opportunity and equity for all Americans to benefit our
profession, our patients and communities we serve.
" The leadership and membership of CSA commit
to supporting our entire professional family to
create spaces filled with empathy, encouragement,
and equity for our peers, their families and the
patients and communities we serve. "
CSA's leaders: Drs. Christine Doyle, Jeff Poage, Ron Pearl,
and Antonio Conte guided a working group committed
to introducing a resolution at the House of Delegates
on June 6, 2020, to create the very first Diversity, Equity,
and Inclusion Committee of CSA. The working group
included Drs. Albert Lin, Lydiesther Martinez, Adam
Milam, Andrea Murray, John Patton, Anthony Sawyer,
and me (Felipe Perez). Members of the working group
included individuals with various identity backgrounds
from private practice and academic institutions.
A resolution called " The Creation of the Committee
on Diversity, Equity & Inclusion " was introduced on
June 6, 2020, by the working group to the CSA House
of Delegates, which represents anesthesiologists
throughout California. The resolution recognized that
health disparities exist in the United States among
persons of color, marginalized communities, and LGBTQ+
persons. That we were witnessing an unprecedented
COVID-19 pandemic that was exposing disproportionate
inequities in health outcomes among Black people,
other people of color, and marginalized communities,
with Black patients dying in higher-than-expected
record numbers, and Black people disproportionately
suffering, in-part due to long standing, unaddressed
health disparities, as well as systematic racism and other
socioeconomic inequities. The resolution was discussed
and CSA's Reference Committee recommended approval
as amended.
Tweet from @CSAHQ on June 3, 2020 denouncing racism, a
statement of solidarity, and next steps that would be taken.
The following day the House of Delegates resoundingly
voted in support of the creation of CSA's first-ever ad
82 | CSA Vital Times

Vital Times 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Vital Times 2021

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