Airline Refuses To Let Young, Black, Female Doctor Help In Medical Emergency

A Facebook post written by a doctor named Tamika Cross has been shared over 30,000 times. In it she recounts the discrimination she faced while trying to assist a passenger with a medical emergency on a Delta flight from Detroit to Minneapolis.

Essentially she tried to assist after a person a couple of rows ahead of her had a medical emergency, but the flight attendants kept turning down her help for a variety of reasons, assuming she couldn’t possibly be a doctor. It seems clear she faced some kind of discrimination, though we don’t know if it was due to her race, age, gender, or what.

Here’s the story, in full:

I’m sure many of my fellow young, corporate America working women of color can all understand my frustration when I say I’m sick of being disrespected.

Was on Delta flight DL945 and someone 2 rows in front of me was screaming for help. Her husband was unresponsive. I naturally jumped into Doctor mode as no one else was getting up. Unbuckle my seatbelt and throw my tray table up and as I’m about to stand up, flight attendant says “everyone stay calm, it’s just a night terror, he is alright”. I continue to watch the scene closely.

A couple mins later he is unresponsive again and the flight attendant yells “call overhead for a physician on board”. I raised my hand to grab her attention. She said to me “oh no sweetie put ur hand down, we are looking for actual physicians or nurses or some type of medical personnel, we don’t have time to talk to you” I tried to inform her that I was a physician but I was continually cut off by condescending remarks.

Then overhead they paged “any physician on board please press your button”. I stare at her as I go to press my button. She said “oh wow you’re an actual physician?” I reply yes. She said “let me see your credentials. What type of Doctor are you? Where do you work? Why were you in Detroit?” (Please remember this man is still in need of help and she is blocking my row from even standing up while bombarding me with questions).

I respond “OBGYN, work in Houston, in Detroit for a wedding, but believe it or not they DO HAVE doctors in Detroit. Now excuse me so I can help the man in need”. Another “seasoned” white male approaches the row and says he is a physician as well. She says to me “thanks for your help but he can help us, and he has his credentials”. (Mind you he hasn’t shown anything to her. Just showed up and fit the “description of a doctor”) I stay seated. Mind blown. Blood boiling. (Man is responding the his questions and is seemingly better now Thank God)

Then this heifer has the nerve to ask for my input on what to do next about 10 mins later. I tell her we need vitals and blood sugar. She comes back to report to me a BP of 80/50 (super low, to my non medical peeps) and they can’t find a glucometer. We continue down that pathway of medical work up, but the point is she needed my help and I continued to help despite the choice words I had saved up for her. The patient and his wife weren’t the problem, they needed help and we were mid flight.

She came and apologized to me several times and offering me skymiles. I kindly refused. This is going higher than her. I don’t want skymiles in exchange for blatant discrimination. Whether this was race, age, gender discrimination, it’s not right. She will not get away with this….and I will still get my skymiles….

Shameful, though I’m confident that Delta will investigate this closely. Apparently they’ve already been in touch with the passenger in question, and will carry out a full review of the situation.

Comments

  1. There’s also a thread on FT for interested folks. It was extremely poor judgment on the FA, and the fact that she tried to buy her guilt off with SkyMiles only made it worse. It makes Delta look extremely bad, which is a shame given their very strong support for Black communities in the US.

  2. Sure it looks bad, but I wish people would give other people the benefit of the doubt more often. Dr. Cross looks pretty young, how is it that everyone is sure that the flight attendants would have reacted differently had Tamika been a 20 year old looking male, white doctor?

  3. Flew Delta from FCO-DTW about a one and a half years ago. Man passed out and lost his pulse over the Atlantic. A diversion back to Europe was out of the question because we were too far west to turn back. Doctors (including my mother) put an IV in the man and he got better as we approached the Canadian coast. The man was fine by the time we reached Detriot and Delta gave my mother a $100 voucher good for one year.

  4. @Tom Brady – I wouldn’t trust anyone who looks 20 years old. The youngest doctor I know was 24 out of Med School 😛

  5. I think the overall point here is missed. There is a patient ultimately being denied care due to an unqualified presumably rascist, age discriminate flight attendant. Luckily there were other physicians on board. While there’s not all that much which could be done on a flight we just read on this flight about a passenger whom died on a flight. While not an attorney I would think this could potentially be a lawsuit against delta for withholding medical care. Why any FA would ask for credentials is beyond me, and ultimately expresses some bias they had given they weren’t asked if the male personnel.

  6. @george – easy to say when it’s not you And it’s obvious your not in the medical profession. On a flight with limited resources a doctor is a doctor and it’s head above heels what a FA could provide.

  7. The check of the credentials is so important for liability purposes. If she had those ready for inspection this problem might have been avoided.

    I’m sure the other doctor had his credentials checked before assisting. Probably out of sight of this doctor who is complaining. That is a requirement by airline policy. The airline staff have to be protective about this. I find no problem with this incident.

  8. To those that think that Dr. Cross “looks” too young to help in an emergency on mid air I would suggest to check ID with some of the very young pilots we see in smaller aircraft these days …. If you can trust your life to them ( and 40 + passengers) you can trust Dr. Cross . Give us a break !!

  9. @danny – why exactly are you sure? The bottom line is in times of emergency credentials don’t matter. If there are physicians or medical professionals in board you take them for their word and let them do their jobs. If, in the LIMITED training of the FAs they feel they need to intervene than so be it. It’s easy to say when it’s not us. If you drop in the street I’m sure you’d hope anyone who knows CPR steps in regardless of if they have their creditials.

  10. Do black doctors exist in america??
    Wow
    I never would have thought that possible!

    Did she do it in America or like in sudan or somewhere third world??

  11. For those that may not know…interns in their training might be in their early 20s (24,25). While they may look young are doctors and have undergone medical school training. I would trust any one of them rather than a FA to give CPR, get an accucheck, BP, or any vital for that matter. They are more than capable especially in times of air emergencies. For people that say “oh she’s an OB”, yes but she’s also a physician with in depth training for general medical issues. Anyone that thinks otherwise has no clue if medical education.

  12. @Danny – in the words of Donald Trump, WRONG. Please cite your source and read the Aviation Medical Assistance Act of 1998.

  13. This is so stupid, yes she looks young and all she had to do was pull out her business card or a medical related ID. All I see is age discrimination here, but her first reaction is he is racist!

  14. I am a young physician (was probably 32 at the time) and had been switched from Delta to United during IRROPS, and was sitting in the very back of a west coast to HNL flight. They make an overhead announcement asking for doctors, and as I look around (and wait for someone more qualified than a dermatologist to handle this emergency), nobody rings their call button. So the second time they make the announcement, I reluctantly push the call button. When the flight attendant comes back to my row, she eyes me very suspiciously and asks for my credentials, which I don’t have (by the way – since when do physicians carry their credentials)??

    I’m a clean-cut white guy, but was dressed casual for the trip to Hawaii and wasn’t in a preferred-enough seat to possibly be a physician……they thanked me and said that a nurse has already responded (then why did they make the second announcement?!)

  15. Non-minority (caucasian) are very ignorant to ‘racism in action’, and are to quick to dismiss racism as anything but what it is. It must be nice to be completely blind to the ugliness of the world and the hatred spew by your own kind.

  16. Pathetic place we have gotten to in society where anything bad that happens to a person of color, regardless of circumstances, is immediately viewed as a racist act.
    Maybe it was race. Maybe it was age. Maybe it was gender. Maybe it was none of the above. Definitely it is not something anyone here knows the answer to.

  17. Looks like Tamika doesn’t even have a license to practice medicine yet.
    She’s only a resident on permit according to a public record.

    NAME: TAMIKA CROSS MD DATE: 10/13/2016

    THE INFORMATION IN THIS BOX HAS BEEN VERIFIED
    BY THE TEXAS MEDICAL BOARD

    Date of Birth: 1988
    Permit Type: PHYSICIAN IN TRAINING PERMIT
    Permit Status: PERMIT ISSUED
    Permit Status Date: 6/16/2014
    Begin Date: 07/01/2014
    Expiration Date: 06/30/2017
    End Date: 06/30/2017
    Terminated Date:

    Board Action (includes all actions regardless of license/permit type)
    NONE

    THE INFORMATION IN THIS BOX WAS REPORTED BY THE LICENSEE AND
    HAS NOT BEEN VERIFIED BY THE TEXAS MEDICAL BOARD

    Gender: FEMALE

    Current Primary Practice Address:
    NOT GIVEN

    Education

    Graduation Year: 2013
    Medical School: MEHARRY MED COLL SCH OF MED, NASHVILLE
    Program Type: RESIDENT
    Training Institution: UNIV OF TX MEDICAL SCHOOL – HOUSTON (4 YR PROGRAM)
    Program Specialty: OBSTETRICS AND GYNECOLOGY

    Summary of all License/Permit Types

    Issue Date: Type:
    07/01/2014 PHYSICIAN IN TRAINING PERMIT

  18. @Lucky could you please edit Sam’s comment above to redact Dr. Cross’s address? Doxxing people is totally unacceptable.

  19. @jyee,
    I wholeheartedly agree but I think Lucky only cares about page views these days. Or perhaps if Sam posted some erroneous credit card deal info Lukcy would step in.

  20. Could it be that the Skymiles offer was to thank Dr. Cross for the help?
    Or do we just agree it was to cover up the alleged racism?

  21. Ha the usual the loud ugly cry of the pathetic ” racist ” least one thing we know this word means nothing these days .

  22. Yes she’s in training but she already has years of experience at medical school and 3 years of working as a doctor – she is perfectly well suited to help in a medical situation such as this.

    I don’t know what “credentials” they want to check, in most countries there’s no such thing apart from your credit card saying Dr, but they doesn’t mean your medical! Lufthansa do an excellent Doctors on Board programme though where they verify medical council/board registration in advance, along with specialty, and annotate the manifest with this information to make it much easier for the crew. They also provide liability cover via their insurance. To go back to the first point, they also are perfectly happy to accept trainees – remember you can spend 19 years from school to becoming a consultant and for the vast majority of that time you would be able to help in the sort of emergency situation described here.

  23. The average MCAT at Meharry was a 27…

    Hate to be a jerk but maybe the other doctor went to a higher ranked med school? Higher ranked than #133 out of #141

  24. It is so disturbing to read all of these racist comments on here. It’s supposed to be a safe place to discuss travel related issues. I find it very sad that individuals cannot see that unconscious biases definitely came into play in the incident. It’s not the fact she was asked for her credentials, it’s the fact that the other Doctor wasn’t (which speaks volumes). Furthermore, if the employee didn’t think she did anything wrong, why would she attempt to pacify the situation with SkyMiles? Let’s face it- the perception was just that a young AA woman likely was not a Doctor. Now, we have individuals pointing out the average MCAT scores and ranks of her school to discredit and ridicule her.

    I think some of you would be best suited educating yourself on psychological issues as well as immersing yourself in cultural studies to understand the contemporary minority experience. This way, your comments posted online might reflect sage, better judgement.

  25. If something had happened to the passengers in distress, the FA would have had their deaths on her hands.

    On international flights, the lead FA always inquires with me on if I am medical doctor (my reservation shows me as a Dr. as in a Doctor of Engineering). Once I asked what type of credentials do I require to prove my medical practice. The answer on many international flights: just your word. But I do inform them that I have been a certified EMT for over 15 years, which the appreciate. I have several actual doctors in my family and none of them carry any official credentials around with them just as I don’t carry around my dissertation or degree with me where I go.

    This is a ridiculous action on the part of DL’s cabin crew.

    Furthermore, helping someone in distress is covered under the Good Samaritan law and the good Samaritan cannot face liabilities.

  26. @Utah Saints

    Good use of sarcasm. In my experience, the best docs are those that have earned their degree in India and practiced there before emigrating. Therefore, I always choose my doctors based on these credentials.

  27. I just don’t understand why the FA would refuse the offer of service. Surely two doctors are better than one. Even a med student would be better than nothing. It is not going to be the FA’s fault if someone pretends they are a doctor and the FA doesn’t adequately vet them. Seems like FA was on a racist or ageist (or both) power trip. Simon’s story above show that this is probably not as uncommon as you think. I guess FA’s are taught to look for middle aged white guys flying in FC.

  28. I am not young nor Black, but I am female and a physician.The whole issue of assisting folks is fraught anyhow, there are Good Samaritin laws, but most of us are not trauma or ER specialists and are not in our comfort zone when asked to help. I know many physicians who do not step forward in these situations. When one does try to help, it would be nice if the only reaction was gratitude.
    On at least 3 occasions when I have been assisting someone (side of the road, in a church and on a plane) I have been treated to the assumption that I am not qualified to assist. I’ve had a female run up and say “I’ll take over, I’m a nurse” and two male physicians arrive and say something similar because they were doctors. Unlike this woman’s experience, nobody questioned my credentials once I replied that I was a physician. I faced plenty of chauvinism in my life as a doctor and had to move on with the job and shrug it off, but nobody treated me as badly as she was treated and I don’t blame her for being angry. Skepticism is not a great response to somebody who has offered to help.

  29. What the heck is wrong with some of you people? Presumably you all fly frequently. Let’s hope you don’t experience a mid-air emergent health crisis.

    I’ve been on several flights were a medical professional was requested, and NEVER were credentials checked. Delta has a huge problem on their hands- first with the fact that the FA diagnosed the initial episode as a night terror, which she is totally unqualified to do. Second, she used poor judgment in obtaining assistance for this man.

    Where she went to school and and if she is still in residency is irrelevant. She is still Doctor to you. She has a license to practice medicine. Plain and simple.

    This is blatant racism/agism and maybe sexism. Who knows which (or maybe all).

    Sad because all she wanted to do was help. Which is a lot more than some of you with negative attitudes are doing….

  30. Great idea, Lucky. Keep posting race articles on a blog that clearly has a serious problem with racism in the comments section. Maybe it’s time for you to grow the hell up and take some responsibility for what happens here.

  31. Physicians-in-training (aka, “residents”) who only have a training permit cannot practice medicine on their own.
    That training permit means they have to be under the supervision of an Attending Physician at an approved training institution. This is always, always pointed out to eager residents
    I have assisted several times in-flight. I always pulled my medical license out to show the crew.
    If Dr Cross does not have a license to practice medicine, her story falls apart along with her credibility.
    I also think calling a flight attendant a “heifer” very unprofessional.

  32. @Amol, wow, what a surprisingly ignorant statement from a current (non-Caucasian) med student. No wonder this country is in the pathetic political state we are today. Some of us have skipped grades.

  33. @ Shawn

    Below is the response from Delta has proves they’re required to perform an identification check. Failure to do so would place Delta in serious liability for allowing an unqualified person to assist in a medical emergency.

    “Three medical professionals identified themselves on the flight in question. Only one was able to produce documentation of medical training and that is the doctor who was asked to assist the customer onboard. In addition, paramedics met the flight to assist the customer further.”

  34. @ Moti

    Read the Act. It states that the person must be “licensed, certified, or otherwise qualified.” The only way the flight attendant can verify this is by an identification card proving such license, certification and/or qualification. Before you call someone WRONG you should verify the information.

    Aviation Medical Assistance Act of 1998, “An individual shall not be liable for damages in any action brought in a Federal or State court arising out of the acts or omissions of the individual in providing or attempting to provide assistance in the case of an in-flight medical emergency unless the individual, while rendering such assistance, is guilty of gross negligence or willful misconduct.”

    According to the federal statute, a medically qualified individual “includes any person who is licensed, certified, or otherwise qualified to provide medical care in a State, including a physician, nurse, physician assistant, paramedic, and emergency medical technician.”

  35. Since the stewardess caused a delay in the provision of medical assistance and it could have led to death of the passenger why is the District Attorney not charging her with attempted murder. I know its a reach but people wrongfully arrested or shot are charged with such ridiculous crimes like resisting arrest (Of course you would resist if you had done anything wrong). Enough laws exist on the books in the US that almost everyone of us breaks 5 before lunch. Whether we get prosecuted , arrested or not not depends on the discretion of cops and DAs (elected officials elected by white majorities). Prosecuterial discretion is how Racism is implemented in the US legal system. Things are fixed before they even reach a Judge or Jury.
    If the DA wants to make a stand against racism , he/she can do so and throw the book at the stewardess. Highly doubt it will happen.
    This is how Orwellian societies operate. Outlaw so many things that everyone is a criminal and then give discretion to those in power to decide who is to be prosecuted and who is to be given a pass.

    Just ask yourself the question would a black stewardess have dared ask for credentials from a middle aged white male doctor in a similar situation.

    I am a regular reader but posting as Anon due to the controversial nature of the post

  36. I am not sure if it’s Delta’s policy but I was declined help when I offered to help on DTW-NRT flight. They asked for my credentials and I did not have my license or hospital badge with me at that time. They did find another physician who did.

  37. i think there’s a simple solution, applied by several EU based airlines (eg LH). They have medical professionals “register” as medical professionals wanting to offer help during emergencies; they have a specific mention in their FQTV profile or so and get a (small one off or yearly mileage – don’t remember the details) compensation, in exchange, they commit to help when needed. Simple, reliable, troublefree. Perhaps Delta and others could take a lesson here and the whole media circus above is over and we get back to what it’s really about: offering help if needed, by a certified professional.

  38. Everything in this country is about race or gender lately. We’ll never know, but that flight attendant may have prevented anyone of any gender or color from assisting. Who knows. But I’ve noticed a pattern in the people that automatically assume it was because of their gender or race.

  39. First, the “AIRLINE” didn’t accept her offer or refuse her offer to help. A flight attendant did that…and I don’t know if this attendant made a mistake or not. Second; assuming the flight attendant was being racist is a biased opinion, unless that flight attendant has stated that she didn’t think this person was a physician based upon her race. Calling the flight attendant a “heifer” was a mistake…that much I do know.

  40. I only wish that I could be compensated at every perceived slight that I have had over my lifetime. Could have retired many years ago!

  41. Some people can look very young and still be of a plenty mature age. My bff is a female dentist. She was very bright and graduated in Europe as early as possible. She was often taken as the hygienist by her patients so she took a few years off and pursued other stuff for a bit. She’s a tall white female so petite people are even perceived as younger. I can see this as being a gender and race bias on behalf of the fa.

  42. Bottom line, if you were the patient I doubt you would take the time to interview for the perfect candidate to save your behind. I would be grateful for whoever is more qualify than say a car mechanic to try and save me rather than let me flail around while the FA conducts job interviews.

  43. @Kent Miller

    Although I encourage all to be good samaritans, Not all states and countries have good samaritan laws and good samaritan laws do not [in California] offer blanket protection. If you are not a lawyer, I suggest you do not give legal advise – particularly when it is not clear what state law applies…

    Marriott Marty, Esq.

  44. The Flight Attendant needs to be fired and charged. Attempted homicide is a felony charge. The crime of attempted homicide occurs when a person acts deliberately, intentionally, or recklessly with extreme disregard for human life. If the account is true, a lawyer will successfully argue that the first three hold leading to the fourth.

    The FA’s behaviour was clearly racially motivated and thankfully Delta does not have a union…so at best she will be fired!!!.

    I’m absolutely disgusted by this story, and it just shows that racism, and prejudices run deep in all areas of the US. It’s not illegal to be a racist, and each is entitled to their views…BUT, she put a passengers life in danger and that is unacceptable on any level. For all who disagree, that could have been your love one or YOU needing medical attention.

    When are people going to wake up!!

  45. I am constantly amazed by how often people look for racism despite the fact no evidence exist that there was any. In my experience, only people who themselves are racist (just against non-blacks) scream racism when there is nothing to suggest it. There is nothing to suggest the FA did anything racist.

    Her own evidence shows the FA used the term “sweetie” which means she thought she was too young to be a physician, which she was. The FA had to decide between a more experienced person and one who didn’t appear old enough and made the correct decision. There was nothing to suggest it was because the person was white. If the FA is disciplined, I hope she appeals it and lodges a complaint against this woman, Ms Cross, not Dr Cross, with the Medical Review Board.

  46. As an ER doctor, would like to clarify a few things.

    @Allan Escher and @Sam — you are incorrect, at least with regards to the United States, to say or imply that residents are not licensed physicians. They are. You go to medical school for 4 years and then do a 1 year internship. You take a medical licensing exam. Assuming you pass, at that point you are a licensed physician who can see patients independently (without supervision), prescribe medications, etc. (FWIW and for example, Navy flight surgeons who provide primary care for flight squadrons have only completed an internship at that point.) Now the vast majority of hospitals and other practice settings will require that you do a residency (post-graduate training) in a speciality before you can be credentialed to practice in that speciality in their environment, whether that is in Internal Medicine, Pediatrics, Emergency Medicine, Orthopedics, Cardiology, etc., etc. (and that training is an additional 3-8 years or so overall). But there is nothing to stop you from hanging out a shingle with your name plus M.D. after you complete your internship and seeing patients as a doctor. You are a doctor at that point in the eyes of the government and the law.

    To the best of my knowledge, the vast majority of airlines have policies to ask that a medical professional responding to a call for help provide identification / credentials. And the commenters are correct — very few of us actually carry a copy of our medical license, nursing degree, paramedic certification, etc. My guess is that the degree to which they enforce that greatly depends on how worried they are about the sick passenger’s condition and how convincing the medical professional is. I have an electronic copy of my medical license on my phone for this reason. However, I suspect that in a “take it or leave it” situation the flight attendants would let it slide if they were actually scared about how a patient was doing.

    Personally, given a choice, I’d probably rather be cared for by an OB/GYN resident (still in the midst of their training, and closer to their broader based internship training) than an OB/GYN doctor who was 20 years into their career (the more you do your speciality, the less you remember about everything else)…

  47. Why oh why is it always discrimination. She was asked for credentials and couldn’t provide them. According to the ABC New report this evening creds are a requirement before letting a passenger work on another passenger. Sounds like a CYA, versus a Good Samaritan though.

  48. @Marriot Marty

    I am an employment attorney and Kent Miller is actually not incorrect. All fifty states have a good Samaritan Law and emergency medical health care performed under a good intention is covered, as would be the case here.

    Do not comment without in-depth research.

    All fifty states offer immunity to good samaritans, but sometimes negligence could result in a claim of negligent care if the injuries or illness were made worse by the volunteer’s negligence. Statutes typically don’t exempt a good samaritan who acts in a willful and wanton or reckless manner in providing the care, advice, or assistance. Good samaritan laws often don’t apply to a person rendering emergency care, advice, or assistance during the course or regular employment, such as services rendered by a health care provider to a patient in a health care facility.

    Under the good samaritan laws which grant immunity, if the good samaritan makes an error while rendering emergency medical care, he or she cannot be held legally liable for damages in court. However, two conditions usually must be met; 1) the aid must be given at the scene of the emergency, and. 2) if the “volunteer” has other motives, such as the hope of being paid a fee or reward, then the law will not apply.

  49. @Chris Weisner, I beg to differ. just because you get a medical degree, complete an internship, and pass a licensing exam does NOT confer a medical license. Most residents simply have a training license. One could apply for full licensure after one or two years of graduate medical education, depending on the state. This process requires a full criminal background check, letters of recommendation, fingerprints, and much more.
    Sometimes, an applicant is requested to be interviewed by the state medical board. Residents can get arrested or exhibit behavioral issues during graduate medical training. Frankly, some are placed on probation or even removed from training programs. All of these issues will be investigated by the licensing board.
    I always carry my wallet card license with me. My attorney friends have their state bar cards. Of course, no one ever asks, “Is there an attorney in the house?”

  50. @stvr

    wow…
    just because its ranked #133/144 doesnt mean its a crappy school. Plus, its widely accepted by most people in the medical profession that school rankings, especially by the USNWR is meaningless because its largely weighted by research endowments. Or that the avg mcat is 27. You cant extrapolate from that avg that she had a 27 vs a 35.

    I actually go to a top 10 med school and an OBGYN who has graduated medical school is a doctor and can respond in an emergency situation because we learn the same things in the first four years in medical school, including advance cardiac life support training.

    And how would anyone know if the white seasoned physician went to a better ranked school ? he could just as easily have attended the carribbean med school.s

  51. Obviously medical training is the same length as nurse training degrees.
    Four years.

    Thats really concerning that a dr studies just four years in europe australia its six years full time study.

  52. Apparently the 3rd of three doctors on board has spoken up and presented his version of the story.

    Since neither he nor Dr. Cross carried their credentials on them, both were asked not to assist (as opposed to the doctor who ultimately did assist).

    He said that when the FA told Dr. Cross her assistance would not be needed, she became belligerent and caused a scene. She also continued to yell out information down the aisle and made snide remarks. He also made a reference to her appearance — saying she was dressed in a sloppy manner.

    Here’s an excerpt:

    “Anyway. I was 5 or 6 row behind the couple in trouble. Dr. Cross did stand up and start to get out of her seat. She was confronted and asked for credentials. Just like her, I don’t carry anything that proves I’m a doctor either. Yes the patient was having what appeared to be a seizure. He did float in and out of consciousness. The stewardess asked Dr. Cross for credentials. Dr. Cross became extremely belligerent. Throwing her hands in the air and sounding extremely unprofessional. If I was a patient, her behavior would have scared me. In today’s world….would you want some nut that claims to be a doctor taking care if you. Before I go on. Let’s talk about Dr. Cross’s attire. She looked sloppy and unkempt. A very good reason for the stewardess to question if she was a doctor. Not a black or gender issue at all….. as a side note. I rebuild cars in my time off. My hands are greasy, holes in my clothes. I wouldnt expect anyone to believe that I’m a doctor. But I don’t have that kind of ego to get upset about it. Either accept my word that I’m a doctor or screw off. I don’t care! I’m not the one dying. But go turn this into a racial issue is a scum move.

    “Anyway. They overhead called for a doctor. Me and another man got up. He did in fact have a DEA and an NPI card on him. I didn’t and neither did Dr. Criss. The doc that tended to the patient didn’t have any experience in ER or trauma. But he did his best. Dr. Criss was screaming up the isle on what he should do. It was a disgrace. She was calling the stewardess names and telling the doctor helping the patient that he was useless. The whole time making smug comments about his ability. Dr. cross thinks that just because she may be a doctor that everyone around her must bow down. And don’t go against her or she will blame it on racism… good lord this country is in trouble. Enough said.”

  53. Between the “heifer” remark and the “women of color” values-signalling, I fear this young black woman doth protest just a tad too much.

  54. @Danny – appreciate your argument but I think unfortunately still fails. The Act is perhaps the most simple and straightforward I’ve encountered. Would suggest you first read the ‘definitions’ as stated therein and alo focus in on the LOL language for carriers (hint: key language is “in good faith”). Next, suggest you research the potential interpretations of ‘otherwise qualified’ and also the significance of no list of excluded individuals. Do continue the dialogue, as several commenters have clearly identified the significant liability Delta was exposed to by the errors of the FA. Unfortunately, we need a suit from the recipient of assistance, to really move forward with anything beyond Delta “saving face”.

  55. @Chris Weisner
    I doubt you are an ER physician with such an ignorant understanding of physician licensing.
    All physicians should know about physician licensing requirements for their state.
    Tamika is a resident and can apply for her license but she hasn’t yet.
    So she is not licensed to practice medicine in Texas yet.
    She only has a resident permit. A BIG difference.

  56. All I have to add is that all of you claiming that “they” claim it’s racism “without proof” clearly do not understand that, like sexism most prejudices are entirely unconscious. Few of us doubt that an older white male would not have received the same attitude. An older black male?Older white female? Young black male? Young white male? Who knows? But it’s ALL prejudice and should be a lesson to us all. None of us are without it. (And FWIW, I agree she loses points for the heifer crack. That was totally uncalled for.)

  57. @mbh How sad you must be in life, constantly looking for prejudice. Maybe you should look in the mirror and recognise your own failings before you try and paint everyone else with the same brush. You see a colour difference because you are looking for one. Isn’t that the very definition of racism?

    If you ask a person for ID when they are trying to buy alcohol but look young, is it ageism or just common sense?

  58. @Michael I’m sure the compensation you’d receive over your lifetime as a person of color or female or LGBT or other would more than make up for ALL the disadvantages that come with it in our society. Yeah. Some SkyMiles would definitely make it worth it for a lifetime of discrimination.

  59. SHE IS A DOCTOR!
    Dr. Tamika Cross, a black physician at the Lyndon B. Johnson Hospital in Houston, could not immediately come to the phone on Friday. She was busy delivering a baby boy by C-section.

    So, yes, in case anyone has any doubt, Dr. Cross is an “actual physician.”

    The fact you doubted it with Google searches that pulled up her in school licenses and took that as fact speaks a lot.

  60. Why even bother intervene? I’d have stayed out of it. In medical ethics, ‘Good Samaritan’ laws do not place on any physician any obligation whatsoever to intervene. Yes, even aboard a bloody airline. Physicians take a lot of crap for offering to save lives nowadays, based on shitty reasons such as racial prejudice. Hello, someone’s dying here! Even a fourth-year med student (invariably trained on basic life support (BLS)) will just about do! How much more an M.D.? Many comments here suck. Lots of ignorance on display.

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