Community Conversations: Changing Systems, Challenging Attitudes

Community Conversations: Changing Systems, Challenging Attitudes

Community Conversations is an ongoing series of discussions with members of our community to address challenges they face receiving healthcare. UCR School of Medicine wants to hear your stories so that we can listen, learn, and become better physicians for our community.

The program works in partnership with our medical education program called Health Equity, Social Justice, Anti-Racism (HESJAR), to provide our students and faculty with unique insights on issues patients face in Inland Southern California. Our goal is to learn from you and ultimately provide the best care for our diverse community.

Discussions are held online on a monthly basis and are open to the public. We invite guest speakers and panelists to share their experiences with medicine. If you would like to share your story, please email us at

Inaugural Community Meeting - November 21, 2020

Topics: accessibility of healthcare, mental health, LGBTQIA+ issues, and decolonization of healthcare practices.

What We Heard

Our first panelist described her experience with healthcare during her pregnancy and feelings of invalidation. She urged healthcare providers to actively listen to their patients and to try to provide culturally sensitive care by taking into consideration a person’s beliefs and customs, such as the work of Curandero/as (traditional Hispanic midwives).

Our second panelist talked about his experience as a member of the LGBTQIA+ community and the need to continuously educate healthcare providers about LGBTQIA+ health. He also echoed that healthcare providers should work to become active listeners, as well as advocates for their patients.

What We Will Do

After listening and reflecting, our students and faculty committed to changing systems and challenging attitudes by practicing these active listening skills in healthcare:

  • Concentrate on the person speaking
  • Avoid trying to think of an answer
  • Eliminate distractions
  • Be respectful
  • Pay attention to vocal inflections
  • Paraphrase what you heard and ask for verbal confirmation
Additional Reading