NY hospital moves to fight racism flap

ALBANY, NY: Fearing the magnification of an innocent mistake, the Bellevue Women’s Hospital in Albany moved last week to quash charges of racial discrimination after several black women were turned away from a free osteoporosis screening at a health fair held in a state building.

ALBANY, NY: Fearing the magnification of an innocent mistake, the Bellevue Women’s Hospital in Albany moved last week to quash charges of racial discrimination after several black women were turned away from a free osteoporosis screening at a health fair held in a state building.

ALBANY, NY: Fearing the magnification of an innocent mistake, the

Bellevue Women’s Hospital in Albany moved last week to quash charges of

racial discrimination after several black women were turned away from a

free osteoporosis screening at a health fair held in a state

building.



Carole Salluzzo, the hospital’s manager of community education,

explained that the screening process was not discriminatory - the

screening machines were programmed to analyze genetic information from

white women, who are at much greater risk for osteoporosis than black

women.



Nevertheless, minority women protested by posting ’white women only’

signs around the screening booth. The incident attracted heavy local

media coverage in print and on TV.



’The hospital gave the correct information, but coming on the heels of

the incident, it came across as just a reason why it happened,’ said

David Brown, president of Albany-based Sawchuk Brown Associates. ’People

still saw it as an exclusionary thing.’



Aware of nearby government workers who might be quick to charge

discrimination, the hospital’s PR staff issued a press release

apologizing for its lack of foresight and explained that the screenings

were not meant to be discriminatory.



The hospital also offered screenings the following day with a more

inclusively programmed machine.



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