This paper applies social cognition research to understanding and ameliorating the provider contribution to racial/ethnic disparities in health care. We discuss how fundamental cognitive mechanisms such as automatic, unconscious processes (e.g., stereotyping) can help explain provider bias. Even well-intentioned providers who are motivated to be nonprejudiced may stereotype racial/ethnic minority members, particularly under conditions of that diminish cognitive capacity. These conditions - time pressure, fatigue, and information overloadare frequently found in health care settings. We conclude with implications of the social-cognitive perspective for developing interventions to reduce provider bias.
- Provider behavior
- Social cognition