TJC Story Blog

Jun 2021

Patricia Watson

Ms. Watson, a 69-year-old Black woman, shared with TJC that she has felt discriminated against because of her race or ethnicity while accessing healthcare.

Ms. Watson said, “I have a chronic medical condition that is associated with flare ups and pain. I went to the specialist who I had seen several times and reported the exacerbation of pain. She immediately treated me as if I made the visit to get pain meds. Another visit I was very stressed at work and asked for a referral to see a mental specialist and was denied this request.” She added, “One of my physicians has not touched me since the pandemic began last year. I have had virtual visits and office visits.”

She also shared that she has had health problems because of environmental toxins in or hear her home: “I had respiratory issues for six months, productive cough, and was finally told I had environmental asthma due to the air pollution in Los Angeles.”

She would like to tell politicians, “Paid health advocates should be an option for private and state health plans. Too many times I get questions for family, church members, and friends because the office staff and physician have not taken adequate time to explain lab, medications, diagnoses, treatments for them to have good information to make good decisions about their health.”

*The Black Health Matters initiative seeks to frame health as a racial justice issue and to educate about the long-standing systemic barriers to care and other social determinants of health as well as bias in the healthcare industry that create worse health outcomes for Black people. If you have ever experienced health disparities or health inequities, please fill out this brief survey. TJC wants to share your experiences to educate people about these issues and get them to take action to fix the problems in our healthcare system.