Two pediatricians, two allergists, one dermatologist and three hospitals. Anna Akins, 32, sat in waiting rooms in Louisiana for over nine months trying to get her newborn son’s condition diagnosed while he spent his days coughing and wheezing with undiagnosed allergies and no answers.
For Akins, it took hours of exhausting conversations with doctors. She said she was not taken seriously by medical professionals as a Black mother. Doctors questioned her mental state, asked her if she was on drugs and yelled at her when she became more persistent in pushing for her son’s diagnosis, she told USA TODAY.
At a time when the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says communities of color are at a higher risk of COVID-19, medical professionals say complaints of medical discrimination are on the rise and they are pushing to change it.