NxNE Community Health Center welcomes first Black Medical Director, Dr. Gina Guillaume


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Wed, 11/24/2021 - 5:45pm to 6:00pm


North by Northeast Community Health Center is Oregon's only medical climic devoted to Black and African American health. On November 17th, they welcomed Dr. Gina Guillaume, as the clinic's new Medical Director, the first Black doctor to fill that role. 

Dr. Guillaume spoke with KBOO's SteviRae about the significance of her new role and the importance of addressing racism as a social determinant of health. 

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The CDC recognizes racism as a serious threat to the public’s health. Racism continues to be a major social determinant of health--built into everything that affects a person’s wellbeing: where they can live, work, go to school; how the city and police treat their neighborhood; how they can get around; if they can see a doctor or a dentist; what they have to eat. It all adds up. 

And from Anarcha, Lucy and Betsey to Tuskegee to forced sterilizations to Serena Williams to COVID and beyond, anti-Black racism in health care has a deadly and dehumanizing living legacy. Racism in healthcare is both historical and ongoing. It is systemic and individual--especially in Black patients’ interactions with healthcare providers. Fear of stigma and bias at a doctor’s appointment leads people to avoiding or delaying care. 

According to Portland State University, in Multnomah County: 

  • African-Americans are more than twice as likely as whites to die of diabetes.

  • African-American mothers are almost twice more likely than whites to give birth to low birth weight (LBW) babies.


According to the Oregon Health Authority, in Oregon:

  • 13.4% of African Americans have diabetes, compared to 6.4% of whites.

  • 41.4% of African Americans have hypertension, compared to 25.3% of whites.

  • 16.5% of African Americans have asthma, compared to 10.1% of whites.

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