Fox News is in the news again this morning after a heated debate on Fox & Friends sparked outrage and controversy among spectators.
Fox News medical contributor Dr. David Samadi is being blasted as “sexist” for his comments on healthcare for women after seeming to suggest that women should pay more than men for healthcare. Dr. Samadi joined the Fox & Friends hosts in a discussion about the dissolution of gender-rated healthcare with the 2014 advent of the Affordable Care Act.
This provision requires that men and women pay the same premiums for health insurance, when for years, women paid more. It’s one of the least controversial provisions in the reform package.
“We only have the prostate,” Dr. Samadi said. “Women have the breasts, they have the ovaries, they have the uterus, they get checked in every part.”
Dr. Samadi, a professor at Hofstra University, insisted that he wasn’t being biased.
“They go through a lot of preventive screenings, they give birth, they have the whole mammogram, the Pap smear. Guys, we don’t like to go to doctors, right? Seventy percent of health care decisions are made by women. In my own practice, I see it’s the women who bring the guys, who say, ‘Go get screened.’ Otherwise, we would never go,” he said.
Co-host Gretchen Carlson jumped in and said that the fact women take their health more seriously should earn them a discount of some sort, and even mocked Dr. Samadi’s sentiment that women live longer with a cynical “Let’s just kill ’em off!”
Samadi’s comments are still being shredded Internet-wide by a variety of Twitter users, blogs and mainstream publications, but the National Women’s Law Center’s response is arguably the most informative, because they displace outrage in favor of elucidation.
Pointing to their recent in-depth study on the gender rating practice of most health insurers, they said “the fact is that women are charged more for health coverage simply because they are women.”
However, they did say that women tend to pay more for healthcare over all due to preventative services, but that this different from the inflated premiums.
“Yes, women access more preventive services, as the commentators point out. But shouldn’t all of us get the preventive care we need to get and stay healthy? Why should women be discriminated against for simply going to the doctor?”
Watch Dr. Samadi’s discussion on women’s healthcare with Fox & Friends up top, and let us know what you think.