Returning race to the clinical dialogue: Maximizing use of ethnoracial demographics in clinical care
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Expires on Dec 20, 2024
Credit Offered
1 CME Credit
1 COP Credit

Just as we have begun to acknowledge the role, relevance, and reality of racial bias and racism and their impact on clinical care, medical students, residents and fellows are being encouraged to omit racial demographics in oral and written clinical reports. This is ostensibly done to prevent biased medical decisions and compromised medical treatment. However, omission of rich identifying information and avoidance of the topic has the paradoxical effect of reinforcing unconscious bias and comprising clinical care. What is not acknowledged is not examined. Furthermore, silent disregard of ethnoracial data carries the risk of devaluing clinical material that conveys rich cultural history, healthy coping mechanisms, and sources of support that help us to understand how a patient navigates a world shaped by race and racism. Avoidance of race does not promote better treatment. Elimination of bias and racism in clinical practice begins with the ability to speak honestly and forthrightly about a patient’s identity. This is best achieved by having a conversation about race with the patient, not simply about the patient.


Recorded webinar, non-interactive, self-paced distance learning activity.

This presentation was recorded on September 27, 2021.

Learning Objectives

  • Recognize the contemporary use of demographics such as race, ethnicity and other variables denoting difference.
  • Differentiate the pros and cons of including ethnoracial identifying data in the chief complaint and history of present illness.
  • Implement the skills to appropriately include ethnoracial demographics in a manner that deepens clinical understanding and fosters better clinical care.

Target Audience

Physician (Non-psychiatrist), Physician Assistant, Psychiatrist, Psychologist, medical students, and other mental health professionals  

Instructional Level


Estimate Time to Complete

Estimated Duration: 1.0 hour
Program Start Date: December 20, 2021 
Program End Date: December 20, 2024

How to Earn Credit

Participants who wish to earn AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™ or a certificate of participation may do so by viewing the live presentation and completing the evaluation. After evaluating the program, course participants will be provided with an opportunity to claim hours of participation and print an official CME certificate (physicians) or certificate of participation (other disciplines) showing the event date and hours earned.

Continuing Education Credit


The American Psychiatric Association (APA) is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The APA designates this live event for a maximum of 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.    

Faculty and Planner Disclosures

All financial relationships relevant to this activity have been mitigated.


  • Constance E. Dunlap, MD, DFAPA is a board certified psychiatrist who is actively engaged in clinical care, residency training, and advocacy to promote health equity by addressing structural racism in medical education and residency training. As a physician who is also trained as a psychoanalyst, Dr. Dunlap believes that the promotion of mind-body-spirit wellness begins with good nutrition, which is fundamental to preventative care. For those in need of psychiatric care, she provides comprehensive in-depth treatment, which includes psychotherapy with or without medication (depending on the need). She is interested in the role of Intersectionality and the management of “difference” – race, gender, ethnicity, and sexual identity - in interpersonal relationships, group dynamics, and institutional structures. She has decades of experience working with diverse populations. Dr. Dunlap is a Clinical Professor of Psychiatry in the George Washington University Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences. She is a former president of the Washington Psychiatric Society (WPS) board of directors and currently serves as a WPS Delegate to the Assembly of the American Psychiatric Association.


  • Tristan Gorrindo, MD, American Psychiatric Association. Reports no financial relationships with commercial interests.

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