The Good Doctors: The Medical Committee for Human Rights and the Struggle for Social Justice in Health Care

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Bloomsbury Publishing USA, Jul 1, 2009 - History - 336 pages
13 Reviews

The Medical Committee for Human Rights was organized in the summer of 1964 by medical professionals, mostly white and Northern, to provide care and support for Civil Rights activists who were organizing black voters in Mississippi. They left their lives and lucrative private practices to march beside and tend the wounds of demonstrators from Freedom Summer, to the March on Selma, to the Chicago Democratic Convention of 1968. Galvanized, and sometimes radicalized, by their firsthand view of disenfranchised communities, the MCHR soon expanded its mission to encompass a range of causes from poverty to the war in Vietnam, and later took on the whole of the United States healthcare system. The MCHR doctors soon realized that fighting segregation would mean not just caring for white volunteers, but exposing and correcting the shocking inequalities in segregated health care. They pioneered community health plans and brought medical care to underserved, or unserved, areas.

Though education was the most famous battleground for integration, the appaling injustice of segregated health care had equally devastating consequences. Award-winning historian John Dittmer, author of the classic Civil Rights history Local People, has written an insightful and moving account of a group of idealists who put their careers in the service of the belief, stated in their motto, that "Health Care Is a Human Right."


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THE GOOD DOCTORS: The Medical Committee for Human Rights and the Struggle for Social Justice in Health Care

User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

Civil-rights historian Dittmer (History/DePauw Univ.; Local People: The Struggle for Civil Rights in Mississippi, 1994) focuses on one of the lesser-known groups involved in the struggle.The author ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - kbondelli - LibraryThing

The Good Doctors is an interesting and well-researched account of the Medical Committee for Human Rights, a group of doctors, nurses, and other health care professionals that played a large yet often ... Read full review


The Good Doctors
Freedom Summer in Mississippi
Rights Movement
Selma and Jackson
Summer 1965
The MCHR Legacy

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About the author (2009)

John Dittmer received the Bancroft Prize, and several other awards, for Local People: The Struggle for Civil Rights in Mississippi. He is a professor of history at DePauw University.

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