Well, the world did not end as was predicted (again), so here we are facing a new year begging us to make yet another new year’s resolution. Sigh. A resolution. A promise we make knowing full well we won’t keep it, but are somehow obliged to make it anyway. And of course the most common resolution that races to fulfill this prophecy of failure is losing weight. This year, the Association for Size and Diversity and Health (ASDAH) proposes a different approach to this annual ritual.
While the world did not end, there are signs that some of the old views on how weight and health conflate are being reconsidered and how bias based on body size impacts our health and the care we receive.
One key to moving this paradigm shift forward lies in our relationships with those that take an oath to heal us when we are not well. Strong relationships with our doctors, nurses and other medical and health practitioners are essential. And the key to that strength is communication.
Medical and health practitioners are just as subject to the toxic culture, the misinformation and stereotypes that surround weight and health as everyone else. Recent studies found that patients are vulnerable to multiple forms of weight bias in health care settings.
Therefore, addressing the bias found in the health care field is a place to start. And who better to communicate to doctors and practitioners what a patient needs than ourselves?
This year, don’t just make a resolution: become resolved—resolved to participate in a cultural shift. ASDAH is providing you with an opportunity to do just that. Submit your health care story to our Resolved: Addressing Weight Bias in Health Care project. Share your experiences, what you would like your doctor to know, and the next steps you have resolved to take to improve the care you get. No matter what our body sizes, large or small, short or tall, we deserve medical care free from bias.
ASDAH will compile these videos as part of a short film designed to educate health care professionals about treating patients of all sizes.
Join us in becoming the change we want to see in the world.
How to participate:
Submit your story as a short 2-3 minute video or similar length written work. Your submission should cover the following:
- Your story. Share a specific situation you experienced. How did it make you feel? Did it impact your health status or your ability to seek further help? etc.
- The “Ask.” Start a sentence, “And so I am asking you, …” What would you ask your health professional regarding the above situation if you could bring yourself to do it? If you could tell your health professional one thing about that experience, what would it be? What do you wish s/he would have done differently? etc.
- What you resolve to do going forward. Start another sentence, “And so, I am resolved to … ” What would you do differently next time you are faced with a similar situation? What positive action can you take now? Get a second opinion? Share information with your health professional? Bring a friend next time? etc.
- Upload your video to Vimeo (www.vimeo.com). You will need to set up a free basic account.
- Under privacy settings “who can watch this video?” mark only people I choose and then enter firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Under “what can people do with this video?” be sure to c`heck off download the video.
- Email the link to your video to email@example.com
- Written submissions can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org
Deadline for all submissions: February 15, 2013
Note: Once you have made a submission, we will email you a release authorizing ASDAH to use it in our film. All submissions must be given freely with no restrictions on use by ASDAH, including the right to edit your submission and distribute our film with no further consideration or permission required.