GA ACC Statement on Diversity, Equality and Inclusion

The Georgia Chapter of the American College of Cardiology (GA ACC) is an unwavering supporter of diversity, inclusion and equity for our members, our cardiovascular teams and most notably, our patients. Georgia is the proud home of equal rights founders and leaders such as the Reverend Martin Luther King Jr, Ambassador Andrew Young and US Representative John Lewis. Our state has prevailed over social injustice, achieving progress at times when other locales were unsuccessful in finding solutions for racial and social inequality. History proves that non-violent, peaceful means can and will move us closer to a more open, mutually respectful and equal society. A strong and adamant stand must be taken by those with the duty of leadership to rectify the current conditions for those who are oppressed.

The GA ACC is committed to diversity, equity and inclusion for all our members regardless of skin color, race, ethnicity, gender, education, faith, or sexual preference. We provide the best care for our community of diverse patients when we achieve diversity among our teams, members and leaders. We will not tolerate any injustice, hate, violence or disregard for the rights of the patients and communities we serve. We acknowledge that our Black community has suffered in society and has been disproportionately affected by the health inequities of cardiovascular disease and more recently, COVID-19. Additionally, our Black patients have suffered violent and unconscionable treatment at the hands of some law enforcement officers, and others, evident by the most recent and heinous homicides of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor. We lament all other victims who have gone unreported, unpublicized, or undiscovered. We are dedicated to fighting injustices that effect any of our patients! We empathize and are deeply saddened by these recent, senseless and heartbreaking deaths. As physicians, and other healthcare team members of the GA ACC, we have vowed to “Do No Harm” and we will continue to speak up stridently and confidently to protect the victims of racism and inequality so that the next person who utters “I can’t breathe” will be heard and protected.

J. Jeffrey Marshall, MD, FACC

Gina Lundberg, MD, FACC
Chair, Committee of Diversity and Inclusion