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I am so glad to see John Oliver address this issue. MSM certainly isn't. I read about this a year ago and posted it on facebook. Not much response and people do not want to discuss it.

silverotter11 9 Aug 26

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John Oliver, Larry David and Wanda Sykes in one clip! Can it get any better than that? 😀

So true. If this happens to you, find a different doctor.


Serena Williams almost died because her doctors were so dismissive of
what she was telling them.

I've been chasing an accurate diagnosis for why I'm losing my vision, couldn't
carry a pregnancy to term, and a whole host of other symptoms, for decades.
At this point, it doesn't even matter anymore.
Most of the time, I just feel like I'm waiting to die.

Welcome to the club . I know what , at least some , of my medical issues are , they just don't have any cures for me .

@Cast1es And the stop-gap treatments have often had side-effects which have been worse than some of the symptoms they're supposed to be treating.
At this point, finding a "cure" isn't even anything I think about anymore.
I'd just really like to know what the fuck is wrong with me.


Love Wanda Sykes! Watch her special on Netflix.

As a white woman, I get better medical treatment than minories, but worse than white men.

Bias against women

"If men had breast cancer as often as women, we would have a blood test for breast cancer instead of painful mammograms," I said disgustedly after having my breasts smashed, bruised and mangled once again in a mammogram machine.

Because I am thin, my breasts are dense and small. Technicians can't get a clear image.They try over and over, crushing my breasts harder. Excruciatingly painful.

Bias against women

"There are no studies on the cause of breast infections in nursing mothers," my female doctor said in 1990. I looked at her in disbelief. I had nine consecutive breast infections in five months of nursing Claire. Gave up nursing because I was down to 100 lbs. My friends thought I had AIDS.

It took three years to regain my health. I believe having another child would kill me.

EXactly! I find it stunning so many female doctors put up with is bias.


At Yale medical school, student Louann Brizendine wanted to volunteer for a medical study to earn money. She was turned down because she was female although the medicine was for females. She went on to graduate from Harvard as a neuropsychiatrist and wrote two books, The Female Brain and The Male Brain, showing the growth of the brain of each gender. You go, doctor girl!


I have known a LOT of doctors. There are a lot of doctors who are just assholes. They become doctors for status or money. That doesn't mean they won't be good at their jobs, but a lot of them are not. Like the general population, some will be racists, some will be misogynists, and maybe both. While most people think because someone is a doctor they must be smart, that is not necessarily true. My primary doctor at the VA is a female doctor from India and I really like and trust her. I would suggest to any woman to find a female doctor as your primary physician if possible.

Somewhere in the world is the world’s worst doctor and unfortunately someone has an appointment tomorrow 😱


I've had to become my own advocate and read extensively and force certain testing to prove my point many times. Thyroid is more prevalent in women but we're told it's all in our heads, or we're older, or we're mothers, etc. They'd rather write a script for antidepressants. I am fortunate in that it takes high levels of pain for me to feel it but that also causes other problems. Any man telling me there isn't bias is full of S&%$!


I hate going to the doctor! I've NEVER felt that they take me seriously. The only time I've ever felt truly taken care of by a doctor was when I had a female doctor.


Yep, I had tumors the size of oranges in my uterus and my male doctor told me that there was nothing wrong with me except I was looking for pain meds. When I finally went to another doctor who was female I finally was diagnosed. And this isn't the first time it happened. Something similar again with a needed hip replacement.


And there is another aspect to this bias problem that is addressed even less: transphobia []

I know, as long as you're white, hetero and male you're golden. I know as a "normal" looking white woman I skate in many instances, I could rob a store blind if I wanted to. A black man goes into a store in a white area and somone will follow you around. I can not imagine how it is going to a doctor as a black woman in some places in this country, it is not easy as a woman but I have been lucky and gotten many female doctors thru the years.


People think that most discrimination is overt. If the N-word or the J-word or the Fem-word isn't being spoken or shouted then folks say there aren't any bigots present.

But our society is completely packed with implicit biases. There is no way in the foreseeable future we'll get rid of them. All we can do for now is constantly and diligently work to make it better.
And know we'll never finish.


I saw that and you are right nothing being addressed. There are a number of issues being back burned currently. Although the medical bias issue does illuminate some of the prejudices espoused by some groups.


Oh yeah, I've been totally written off because I was a 50 year old female. It was maddening. Of course, I got another doctor. But I've learned to speak up for myself. I think this is still totally relevant

I truly loath, "well at your age" from people in the medical profession 😠.


This is why I'm a fanatic progressive. People are going to be beholden to their biases so long as humans are making the primary decisions. We already have the technology to eliminate medical bias, why are we talking about more diversity for doctors?

Why was this never mentioned in the video?

A PC PCP will have bias against me so I am seeing a Naturopathic iMac. An Apple a day keeps the doctor-bot away!


I've been trying for over ten years to find out why I'm so tired. So far, all I can get is one doctor telling me I have a higher than normal viral load. What virus, I have no clue because they wouldn't even test me further. This was when I was working and had insurance. Now that I'm disabled and on Medicare/Medicaid...... nothing. They blame it on my chronic illnesses and refuse to do any testing.

It's incredibly frustrating to get your 8hrs of sleep only to want to go back to bed. I've been known to sleep anywhere from 10 to over 16hrs.

Low iron ? Low vitamine D ? Sleep apnea ?

@Cast1es I have blood test every quarter because of my chronic kidney disease (this started long before my chronic illnesses). Iron not low, taking 100,000 units of Vitamin D a month, and use a CPAP machine. Besides, I can't see those causing the viral load that keeps showing up.

@kiramea It could be Chronic Fatigue Syndrome - but I'm so puzzled they won't do the testing.
It sounds autoimmune and trust me I have CFS and Fibro and I had a very complete workup to determine that.
I'm still left wondering if I might instead have Chronic Lyme disease. Which would be treatable with antibiotics.

You might want to find a virologist to test you further? They might be interested.
Or a rheumatologist might also do further testing.

Drs have a real lack of desire to sleuth at all these days to the absolute detriment of their patients health.

@RavenCT CFS and Lime are two of the things I've considered. At the moment I live in a small town but planning on moving to a much larger one in a few months. I was planning on getting a referral to either a virologist or rheumatologist.

@kiramea Chronic Epstein Barr was big when I was in college in the late 80's too. I don't even know if that's mentioned any longer?

So many of us seem to have a similar cluster of symptoms/syndromes without a true diagnosis that it's baffling.

I'm glad you'll be seen at a larger hospital. Preferably a teaching hospital. They tend to be more interested in diagnosing. But even there I've heard "Well we give up".

I had a Rheumatologist diagnosis me with Fibromyalgia and then say "But I don't treat that". It was a magnificently terrible day.
I had a diagnosis - but found out there was no preferred treatment for the condition. (I shouldn't roll my eyes that hard!). I've had so much Woo thrown my way that I'm surprised I'm not buried under it. (Reason wins out thankfully).

Good luck!


This is both funny and yet so true. As a white man over 65 I am totally aware that anything doctors do for me is based entirely on my blood work. They read that and prescribe pills. Someone is there typing things into a laptop computer but I have come to believe none of it is related to anything I am telling the doctor. This is because my treatment is only related to the blood readings. My previous doctor told me I had a heart problem and he pulled that information out of his ass. I told my doctor this but she would not believe it until she tested my heart and determined that I have no heart problems. Modern medicine in America is flat out awful.


We sort of cross posted interests - '" When you realize all of this happened in our lifetimes you understand why Feminism should be a ..."

There's a correlations between the disregard of women and this post as well. The timeline was interesting.
We really haven't had rights very long. And we still don't have equal rights under the law.

Now wonder it's so easy to dismiss us.


This makes me think that a woman would be a fool not to insist on having a female doctor and being treated exclusively by female physicians. I must admit, however, that the times John Oliver has done an exposé on topics for which I had some expertise I could see him make fairly drastic exaggerations and assumptions to make a particular industry or practice to look bad. There is virtually no effort to be even handed or fair in his attacks but to brutalize his comments in order to appear to be our saviour "white knight". That being said, I would still recommend women only see women doctors.

OCJoe Level 6 Aug 26, 2019

The fact remains Americas infant and mother mortality rates are very high for a "developed" nation and those figures are high due to the deads of black babies and their mothers, something the medical profession seems to have little interest in changing or preventing. There was an article I read almost a year ago about this bias and yes he is always over the top but the mortality rate fact is there.

People without means have little choice on who treats them. I will make note of an added bias - where I live, almost every healthcare facility is now owned by religion-affiliated entities - for example, a friend was unable to get care for her transgender daughter from her practitioner; she had to move to Seattle so her daughter could get the care she needed.

Again your statistics are pointing the finger at the wrong group. This is a political issue not a medical issue. This is access to care. How do you expect doctors to fix this problem?

You keep repeating the same message, but your information is inaccurate.
This group of women are not being ignored. They don’t have ease of access. That is due to a vast array of reasons, socioeconomic and political being the biggest.

@darthfaja How are politicans responsible for the infant and mother mortality rates among people of color? Funding maybe but it is the caregivers that thru bias untimately fail the patients.

Except that’s not what is happening
Those statistics don’t say that
They are being incorrectly interpreted


A few bad people doing their job poorly does not define medicine or the people busting their ass everyday.

Many of the posts below have very inaccurate information in them or are related to ancient medicine practices that are no longer used because they were wrong.

There’s much more to medicine then simply staying I had this problem and nobody did anything.

Easy to point a finger when white males get blamed for everything wrong with society these days.

If anyone here can do better then go to med school and make it better.

Correct on one level, if you are a white male. Black women especially are treated poorly, and pregnant black women the worse. The fact is America ranks among the worst for developed countries for infant and mother mortality and that rank is because of the deads of black babies and their mothers. That is not the result of just a few bad apples.

More bad information
That study is being inaccurately interpreted.
It has less to do with medicine and more to do with access of care which is a political issue not a medical practice issue.
It is also why our age rate is declining
It’s not because of our medicine
It’s due to people being killed

Many problems in medicine arise from political issues. I’m a medical provider. I’m not a politician, a banker, an attourney, or any of the other jobs people demand of me daily.


I have a nephew who is just starting his residency - I wonder what his reaction to this might be?

This is not the first I'd heard of this issue. There are studies and it was about a year ago I read one of them. I'd have to go back over my e-mails to see if I forwarded to myself and friends. It it not an 'new' thing, Oliver is always over the top with his humor but the report I read was pretty dry and most people to do not want to hear about. Our society still discounts women and people of color as having a stake in just about everything in a male dominated structure. You do not see that as much on There are many wonderful doctors and caregivers out there but just like bad cops they will protect their own, tho maybe not to the degree you see in the law enforcement blue line.
Hopefully your nephew will see the bias.


Like so many other medical issues, the politicians, medical profession, and the insurance companies do not care about how horrid it is!


Spot on. I work in Medical field, it is shocking how many practitioners use religion vociferously with patients. Personally it frightens me to think that patients have to deal with that boundary problem, It creates fear for patients not of that faith, agnostics, atheists, etc. If I wanted to go to a church for treatment, well. Anyway, good post. Thanks!


Video not available.


Came across this in medicine always did my best to be fair and balanced for everyone

bobwjr Level 10 Aug 26, 2019
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