This article was originally published here
Am J Pharm Educ. 2021 Jul 22:8493. doi: 10.5688/ajpe8493. Online ahead of print.
Objective. Promoting equity and diversity in health care must include increasing the prevalence of minority health care professionals. The purpose of this study was to: (1) evaluate changes in Black student enrollment in colleges of pharmacy, medicine, and dentistry; (2) determine if significant differences exist in Black student enrollment among these colleges; and (3) grade colleges on how well Black student enrollment reflects state populations and compare failing grades between 2010 and 2019.Methods. Enrollment data were obtained through the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy, Association of American Medical Colleges, and American Dental Association for Fall 2010 through Fall 2019. Average percentage of Black students and rate change was determined. Colleges were graded on their percentage of Black students relative to Black residents in their state. Kruskal-Wallis H test, Wilcoxon signed rank tests, and Chi square tests were performed to quantify differences in enrollment and college grades.Results. Colleges of pharmacy and medicine experienced a significant increase in Black student enrollment between 2010 and 2019, but colleges of dentistry did not. Pharmacy and medicine also had significantly greater Black student enrollment in 2019 compared to dentistry. Proportion of colleges of pharmacy and medicine with failing grades decreased between 2010 and 2019.Conclusion. To facilitate improved access and limit health and health care disparities, it is important health professions colleges reflect the diversity of the patient populations they serve. Serious and intentional efforts toward diversification, inclusivity, and equity are necessary to improve Black student enrollment.