OSU public health guest lecturer to discuss racism as a national health crisis

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Oregon State University’s College of Public Health and Human Sciences will host a lecture Friday examining racism as a public health crisis.

Dr. Camara Phyllis Jones, a family physician, epidemiologist and former president of the American Public Health Association, is the speaker for this year’s Bray Health Leadership Lecture. Her presentation is called, “Racism is a public health crisis: Now that we see, what do we do?”

Jones is a senior fellow at the Satcher Health Leadership Institute and Cardiovascular Research Institute at Morehouse University School of Medicine, as well as an associate professor of community health and preventive medicine.

As a public speaker, Jones has been working for years to bring race-based disparities and other social determinants of health into the national conversation around health care. Her talks frequently use allegory to make complex topics more accessible.

She is focused on teaching audiences about the structures, policies, practices and values that uphold racism, and wants them to be more aware of who is not at the table when the decisions that prop up inequitable systems are being made.

“All of a sudden, now that we are recognizing the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on communities of color, and after the murder of George Floyd and the highly publicized other murders that have been happening, more and more people are interested in naming racism and asking how is racism operating here, and organizing and strategizing to act,” Jones said.

Register for free to watch the Bray Health Leadership Lecture, which will be webcast live via Zoom from 1-2 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 2.

The Bray lecture series is part of the Tammy Bray Endowment in Health Leadership and Innovation, which was established by CPHHS’ first dean, Tammy Bray, and her husband John. The first lecturer was former U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy in 2017.

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