And she similarly harkened back to the story of Dr. Ogura, a pioneer in larynx surgery and the namesake of her lecture. He was a Japanese American who rose to lead the otolaryngology department of Washington University in St. Louis for 16 years. “Any of us who have that journey with discrimination see that good is never enough,” she said. “And when you think that good is never enough, you’re going to push and inspire your students to reach their full potential.”
Explore This IssueJune 2018
Closing with a famed quotation from Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Dr. Thompson urged everyone to do their part in putting aside bias and diversifying healthcare for the sake of its practitioners and its patients.
“I stand before you all, 50 years old and at the 50-year anniversary of the assassination of Martin Luther King, [Jr.],” she said. “He said,‘… of all the inequalities that exist, the injustice in healthcare is the most shocking and the most inhumane.’”
“I too have a dream, and that would be to see all the implicit and explicit biases out of medicine, so that we can collectively support each other and take care of patients in the manner and [with the] respect that they all deserve.”
Richard Quinn is a freelance medical writer based in New Jersey.