When I first joined AAMI as a staff member 2016, one of our laudable goals was working to improve diversity in the many health technology professions that comprise the AAMI Community.
The baby boomer generation, consisting in large part of older, white men from a technical background—longtime AAMI members who we know and love—was beginning to retire in earnest. That alone meant that the culture and demographics of these fields would be changing, as the upcoming generations are demographically more diverse. Ideas about gender roles have also evolved significantly, even just in the past decade.
It also goes without saying that the conversation about diversity and inclusion in the workplace has changed a great deal since 2016, and even from the beginning of this very year. Now is the time for us to explore the topic of diversity and inclusion in health technology.
That's why, in this issue's special cover story (p. 318), we're exploring our community from the perspective of six professionals of diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds. Our goal is to understand what it's like to be a minority in their fields, to highlight the challenges they've faced pursuing their careers, and their thoughts on everything from device maintenance to mentorships.
We want to listen and to understand—what does the health technology community actually look like from their perspective? Are prejudice and discrimination common in the industry? What can all of us do to create more inclusive environments? And what advice would they pass along to others on similar career paths?
Some of what you'll read will bring you hope. Other tales are frustrating and tell us there's much left to be done. But I think everyone will learn something.
We tried our best to get as many perspectives as possible—from interns to supervisors, healthcare technology management professionals to government regulators, and women and men. But the conversation doesn't end there.
I encourage all of you reading this special issue to weigh in and tell us your story, too, by emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org