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BGN Review: Black Women in Medicine

BGN Review: Black Women in Medicine


Black Women in Medicine is a documentary film written, directed, and produced by Crystal R. Emery that chronicles the challenges Black women face in the medical field and provides insight into the history of Black female doctors.

To provide you with some staggering statistics, only two percent of all physicians in America are Black women.

Shocking—I know.

The great thing about this Oscar-qualifying feature-length documentary is that it provides a broad range of perspectives from young medical students to current surgeons to many trailblazers that have paved the way for more Black women to being accepted to medical schools and further their careers. One such trailblazer is Dr. Jocelyn Elders. She was the first Black woman U.S. Surgeon General, and her story serves as a source of inspiration and empowerment for young Black women.

The documentary mixes interviews and narrative storytelling with actual footage of these physicians practicing medicine and providing care to their patients. We hear from Dr. Claudia Thomas, a Black orthopedic surgeon, who describes how her desire to help shape the human body and her love for geometry helped contribute to her decision to choose that specialty. We hear from a cardiothoracic surgeon, who tells the viewer how many of her patients expect her to be a nurse and are shocked to learn that she’ll be operating on her heart. Another doctor expresses the importance of being open about where she came from because she was a single mother with five children who couldn’t pay her electricity bills while she was in medical school. She was “everything people say you’re not supposed to be,” and yet she persevered to pursue her passion.

It was incredible to me to see what obstacles these women have overcome (both with racism and sexism) to achieve the level of success that they have made and to use their experiences as a source of inspiration for the next generation of young, Black women.

As the film’s synopsis states, in telling the stories of women who have persevered in medical fields in part by overcoming barriers linked to race and gender, “Black Women in Medicine” provides audiences with a vivid and stunning experience of the triumph of the human spirit.

Be sure and check out the website and watch the trailer below!


Kyndal is a free spirit who finds it very hard to describe herself. Tea Snob. Daydreamer. History, Fantasy, & Book Blerd. Cursed with Wanderlust. Jams to show tunes. Obsessed with Hamilton (the musical). Always on the advent of her next adventure. 


Twitter: @ladykyndal 

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