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Millions of Americans are eligible for the BMI-based COVID-19 vaccine. Why should we apologize for this?



When I contacted Dr. Fatima Cody Stanford, an obesity specialist at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital, the first thing she did was to gently correct my use of the term “obese” , Makes me turn to a more neutral person. Instead, use the term “obese” (and in the process show that obese people are very capable of participating in a culture that hates obesity). Dr. Stanford explained: “When we call a person obese, we do not consider that the actual disease process controlled and regulated by the brain’s hypothalamus will cause each of us to regulate weight differently.” “When people look at obese patients, no matter what Whether it’s mild, moderate, or severe, they all think, “Oh, this is what they do to themselves, and they do it because they do it.” We don’t process or attribute the same thoughts to cancer patients. “

Stanford University agrees that in the long run, doctors are one of the “worst groups”

; with persistent phobias, but she is determined to set different standards of care for patients. She pays attention to including obesity in her broader social and cultural background, and pointed out that ethnic minorities are more likely to suffer from obesity in addition to the risk of COVID-19. “When obese patients came to me and asked if they should be vaccinated, I gave them a clear statement, because the data showed that obese patients have significantly worse COVID-19 results. I want my patients to be protected, so , I will do everything possible to advise them to ensure that they receive the best protection from this deadly disease that affects our lives.”

Although medical prejudice is a risk factor for many (if not most) obese people, our own internal phobias and self-judgment can cause psychological damage. “At first, I thought [my BMI qualifying me for the vaccine] The irony is that if I didn’t gain weight during the pandemic, I might not be eligible,” said Catherine, 24, who will soon receive her first dose of vaccine in Brooklyn: “I’m already afraid that people might Talking about or thinking about my vaccination is not only because I gained weight, but also because I was unemployed. It’s hard not to feel that I am fat and unemployed, which means I am worthless or lazy. She also said this: “On the surface I was rewarded for failure, which feels very strange.”


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