The researchers focused on the algorithm's rankings of 6,079 patients who identified themselves as black in the hospital's records, and 43,539 who identified as white and didn't identify themselves as any other race or ethnicity. By Melanie Evans & Anna Wilde Mathews, The Wall Street Journal, October 25, 2019. Researchers Find Racial Bias in Hospital Algorithm Healthier white patients were ranked the same as sicker black patients, according to study published in the journal Science A recent study published in Science Magazine found significant racial bias in an algorithm used by hospitals across the nation to determine who needs follow-up care and who does not. For the study, data-science researchers looked at the assessments made by one hospital's use of the algorithm. Thus, despite health care cost appearing to be an effective proxy for health by some measures of predictive accuracy, large racial biases arise. Researchers Find Racial Bias in Hospital Algorithm. The study didn't name the hospital. The researchers focused on the algorithm's rankings of 6,079 patients who identified themselves as black in the hospital's records, and 43,539 who identified as white and didn't identify themselves as any other race or ethnicity. For the study, data-science researchers looked at the assessments made by one hospital's use of the algorithm. The study didn't name the hospital. The bias arises because the algorithm predicts health care costs rather than illness, but unequal access to care means that we spend less money caring for Black patients than for White patients.