On June 5, 2020, health professionals from all over the country, including AdventHealth, took a knee for 8 minutes and 46 seconds in remembrance of George Floyd, who died on May 25 after a Minneapolis police officer kneeled on his neck for the same amount of time.
At homes and hospitals, medical professionals from AdventHealth participated in WhiteCoats4BlackLives, a movement launched to help eliminate racial bias in the practice of medicine.
According to the website, WhiteCoats4BlackLives.org – created by the organization led by medical students – the movement was originally born out of the National White Coat Die-In demonstrations that occurred on Dec. 10, 2014, as a protest against police brutality. WhiteCoats4BlackLives was created on Jan. 19, 2015, which fell on Martin Luther King Jr. Day.
The recent June 5 demonstration occurred from 1 to 1:09 p.m., with AdventHealth physicians, nurses and other participants taking a knee in solidarity with other health care professionals nationwide for a moment of silent reflection.
“We want to take part in this movement and instill change and action,” said Brandi West, executive director of digital brand and content strategy for AdventHealth.
West and other leaders put together a proposal and presented it to the organization’s marketing and strategy executives, she explained. Once the proposal was approved, the team contacted all communication leaders, along with marketing leaders, across AdventHealth’s markets, in order to efficiently spread the word to all AdventHealth team members.
Brenda Osorio-Dure, an ICU RN who has been working at AdventHealth since July 2018, participated from home.
“I was very proud that the organization as a system took a stand on the fight against racism,” she said.
All team members, whether on-call or at home, were encouraged to participate in the demonstration and post on social media using the hashtags #WhiteCoats4BlackLives and #BlackLivesMatter. Staff members who participated on-site took the necessary precautions to stay safe during the demonstration, according to organizers.
Osorio-Dure said she is protective of her patients and makes sure all of them, including her Black patients, are heard and respected.
“I am sad about everything that is going on in the world,” Osorio-Dure said. “I hope that we can come together and have conversations and educate ourselves. The most important thing is to not be ignorant, and that everyone is educating themselves using unbiased sources.”
AdventHealth is working on three other major anti-racism initiatives that will be unveiled in the future, according to West. She said the company wants to make the announcements with actions and results, not just words.
By T’Ana Moore, for AdventHealth
Image by Newsbreak.com