Into the NICU
Into the NICU
This chapter offers ethnographic insight into the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), a space that is largely inaccessible to the general population. The chapter describes the physical space of the NICU. Parents reveal how they felt about having their newborn infants admitted to the NICU and the varying degrees of racism that saturated the experiences of some, but not all, parents. Most parents interpret their experience through the lens of medical racism. At the very least they understand that if it were not for a particular mediating factor, such as having a connection to the medical field, they likely would have been subjected to racist medical encounters. This chapter also examines how mostly white neonatologists respond to questions related to race and adverse birth outcomes and finds that, for most, class replaces race as the explanatory factor for understanding premature births.
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