Medical staff at a Maryland urgent care clinic allegedly denied a Black girl treatment because they didn’t believe that her mother was white, CBS’s Live 5 reports.
Karen Dresser, who’s White, said she was insulted that workers at Patient First assumed that she and her 12-year-old adopted Black daughter wasn’t a family.
“At first, I was just numb. I was in disbelief, actually,” Dresser told the station. “We are a family in every sense of the word, and for somebody just to make the assumption that we weren’t is hurtful.” She added that she felt the incident had to do with race.
In a Facebook post detailing the event on Sept. 19, Dresser said that workers asked for guardianship papers as proof that her daughter, Amelia, was hers.
“They never asked for her insurance card that had her name on it. Her surname that is the same as mine is there too. I don’t know if I should be ticked or cry,” she wrote. “I can say that I’m definitely going to find out who the regional supervisor is though.”
In a statement, according to Live 5, Patient First said that documentation from a child’s guardian is required.
“During registration, if a minor patient is accompanied by an adult who states that they are the patient’s parent, we take them at their word. If the adult states that they are the child’s guardian, we require documentation to confirm that before the patient can be registered,” the statement read.
Dresser said she wrote the clinic’s corporate office and received an apology.
“I think people out there need to understand that families come in all shapes and sizes and that it’s important to respect all families,” she said.
What's Your Reaction?
Teddy is a multimedia journalist who serves as the culture and political writer for EBONY. His work has appeared in NBC's Owned and Operated stations, as well as DNAInfo, which covered local neighborhood news in New York City. He received his Masters in Journalism from the Craig Newmark School of Journalism at CUNY in 2017.