How is obesity discrimination in healthcare? This may sound like a rhetorical question given the fact that healthcare today is considered to be one of the most discriminatory healthcare settings for obese people. It’s almost as if obese people are being targeted because of their weight, rather than because they have a different medical condition or disease. How ironic then that obesity is now considered to be a behavioral disorder that needs to be treated. As with any other health problem, it is essential for obese people to be diagnosed and treated accordingly. If not, there are serious health complications that may result.
In most cases, how obesity discrimination in healthcare is taking place is because of the differences in healthcare policies between providers, facilities, hospitals and insurance companies. Many people do not get to choose where they receive healthcare coverage so they are forced to choose from a limited menu of doctors, hospitals, clinics and insurance companies. Those who are obese are routinely discriminated against on the basis of their weight. Even those who try to work within the system and are overweight are denied coverage and treatments.
There are many forms of obesity discrimination. Some of them are subtle, such as being told that you cannot exercise at home because your house is too small or being told that you cannot take diet pills that contain ephedra because it could be used as a drug. Other forms of obesity discrimination are not so subtle, such as being told that if you do lose weight, it will only be temporary and it will be back again. This form of obesity discrimination is so common that it is actually illegal in some states to be overweight. Yet in other states, individuals are allowed to be obese but seek treatment for their condition and be legally classed as morbidly obese.
If you are overweight and are finding it increasingly difficult to get treatment, you may feel that you are experiencing gender biased healthcare treatment. Gender bias in healthcare is not as widespread as it is sometimes assumed to be. Men are more likely to be affected by obesity at every age level and to seek treatment. However, women are just as likely to suffer from obesity and also seek treatment. How obesity discrimination in healthcare can affect you can be determined by the healthcare provider.
When it comes to how obesity discrimination in healthcare occurs, you have to understand that healthcare providers often see you as a risk, when you are really a person with an unhealthful medical condition. The result of this treatment can often be the same for each individual. You can end up with a worse prognosis than you had before treatment even began because you received poor care.
To understand obesity and how obesity discrimination in healthcare occurs, you need to first understand health and medicine at their most basic level. When we think of medicine, we think of hospitals and doctors and the way they treat patients who have serious illnesses and diseases. However, even within those walls, there are cracks and gaps that can lead to illness. Some people may simply be more susceptible to certain types of disease, while other people may not be. At the bottom line, all people are equal under the law, but some are more equal than others when it comes to how obesity is treated in medicine.