A 15-year-old black male is being denied proper health care because of his past behavior. According to reports by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Anthony Stokes is in need of a heart transplant because he has an enlarged heart. Stokes is currently a patient at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Egleston and could die in three to six months if he doesn’t get a transplant.
However, the doctors at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Egleston will not put Stokes on the heart transplant list because of bad conduct in the past and low grades, his mother believes. In a letter sent to Stokes’ family, hospital officials wrote,“the decision was made that Anthony is currently not a transplant candidate due to having a history of non-compliance. As we discussed today with Anthony’s mother, we will not place Anthony on the heart transplant waiting list at this time due to this decision.”
Doctors have yet to reveal to his parents why they believe he falls under that category of “non-compliance.” This denial of medical treatment could be a form of unconscious bias.
At 15, Stokes is a young man who has likely made mistakes as he figures out life. That’s a part of growing up and being a teen and young adult. By judging Stokes on bad conduct, the doctors and officials at Egleston are advocating medical negligence.
Members of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference have pressured the hospital to get more direct answers.
Hopefully, Stokes’ family members will push to get more clarity on why Anthony isn’t a candidate.