The National Medical Association (NMA) was founded by group of visionary African-American physicians in 1895. In the setting of racial segregation, membership in the American Medical Association (AMA) was de facto restricted to Whites. Physicians of African descent were often excluded from joining the local medical societies. Membership in a local society was required as a condition of membership to the AMA. The AMA was influential in determining national medical policy and when Black doctors sought membership in the AMA, they were repeatedly denied admission. The primary aim of the NMA was to give a voice to many disenfranchised physicians of African descent excluded from joining the American Medical Association. In 2008, at the NMA national meeting, the AMA issued an official apology for its previous policies of exclusion toward African-American physicians.

Disparities in medical care perpetuated poor health...

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