Bioethics News

A Generation of Bad Blood

June 20, 2016

(The Atlantic) – Research has long suggested that the ill effects of the Tuskegee Study extend beyond those men and their families to the greater whole of black culture. Black patients consistently express less trust in their physicians and the medical system than white patients, are more likely to believe medical conspiracies, and are much less likely to have common, positive experiences in health-care settings. These have all been connected to misgivings among black patients about Tuskegee and America’s long history of real medical exploitation of black people. A new paper details the real health effects that the Tuskegee Study had on black people. The work from Marcella Alsan at the Stanford Medical School and Marianne Wanamaker at the University of Tennessee provides evidence for a strong claim: that by 1980, the public revelation of the Tuskegee Study in 1972 had reduced life expectancy among black men over 45 by over a year.

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