As with all aspects of American history, the effects of slavery and Jim Crow has had, and continues to have a great effect on the development of professions in the country, and especially the southern US. This documentary is the personal account of doctors from differing time periods who have undergone the trials and tribulations, as well as the joyful experiences associated with practicing in the 20th and 21st centuries.
As recently as 2003, a hospital in Pennsylvania actually allowed a racist couple who was there to deliver a baby, request and be granted the exclusion of any and all black nurses, doctors and other personnel from the mother's room during her stay. It seems inconceivable in a new century, but such incidents are not just the horrors of the past, but the realities of the present. This documentary will record first hand accounts of physicians practicing from the 1930's to present, and their take on the ongoing issues surrounding racism.
In 1999, according to soulofamerica.com, for the seventh straight year, Xavier University in New Orleans graduated the most individuals of African descent, to attend Medical School. Spelman, Howard and Morehouse were also in the top eight. But what about in the 1970's or the 1950's or the 1930's? Consistently, MeHarry and Howard have been the reliable and sturdy bastions of education for medical students, but how many still attend those universities now? What about black hospitals, and technical houses who catered to blacks? What are the differences for these practitioners who practiced during segregation and integration? Were and are the effects of discrimination important to making a living and maintaining high levels of service for patients? Is it, or was it better to work in a supportive environment with limited funds, or a hostile environment with unlimited resources, in comparison. These and other questions will be explored during this journey into African American history, and the experiences that made and keep us strong.
We welcome your interest and participation in this project!