The University of Pennsylvania’s Division of Renal-Electrolyte and Hypertension recently made a quiet update to its history web page: it removed all references to its former co-chief, Dr. Stanley Goldfarb.
For several years, Goldfarb has been a vocal critic of considering social determinants of health, racism, and anything else he considers too “woke” in medical education or health care at large. In 2019, he penned a Wall Street Journal editorial entitled, “Take Two Aspirin and Call Me by My Pronouns,” which gave rise to the social media hashtag #GoldfarbChallenge. It makes fun of his criticism that medical students are taught about social issues and don’t spend enough time concentrating on biochemistry and physiology. These tweets share stories of how physicians heroically procured therapies for their patients but, instead of celebrating their successes, sarcastically lament their inability to remember the biochemistry of those medications or the disease processes.