Dear Parkview, I Know I Am Fat

parkview physicians

Snark ahead

My primary care doctor is associated with Parkview Physicians Group in Fort Wayne, Indiana. He works out of the Bryan, Ohio office. I’ve had many of my recent tests done at the Bryan office or Parkview Regional Medical Center in Fort Wayne. Last Wednesday, I had a colonoscopy done at Parkview Regional. Good news, no cancer.Bad news, I am still sick.

With every office visit and procedure, Parkview generates reams of papers that are given to patients to educate them about their health. Last Wednesday was no exception. While I am sure Parkview desires to have an educated patient base, I find the papers a waste of time. Most  often, they tell me what I already know. Take the last batch of papers; here’s part of what was printed:

parkview hospital

OMG, I am overweight. RED ALERT! RED ALERT! Obesity Ahead!

Most fat people know they are fat, and putting their weight in red with an explanation point is only pointing out the OBVIOUS.

My blood pressure was great, as was my pulse, respiration, and O2 levels. Why no star beside these? Come on Parkview, encourage your patients instead of always pointing out their failings. I want to be affirmed not fat shamed.

This is what technology has given us; reams of paper that do little to improve or change our health. I suspect most people don’t even bother to read the papers. I usually glance at them, looking for something I don’t already know, and then I put them through the shredder.

I love my doctor and the treatment I receive at Parkview so I don’t want them to think I am an unhappy patient. But, I am tired of warnings about my weight or the other medical deficiencies I have. I get it, I should weigh less. Move on…and stop putting my weight in red.




  1. Steve


  2. Lynn123

    lol-Good thing they brought this issue to your attention-otherwise, you’d have never known!

    Maybe instead of an exclamation point in red, they could put “omg” in parentheses.

  3. Troy

    A couple of things I notice about this: First it is just a rehash of the report for the physician. For example I’m sure you also know you have never been a smoker. This explains why it isn’t particularly user friendly. I’m sure anything that a physician should mention to his patient is in red with an explanation point.
    Physicians should mention your weight. It might help the odd person, it helped me lose about 30 lbs after a bit of ribbing. Anyway I suppose it could be worse, they could have a picture of wierd Al Yankovich from his fat video that corresponds to one’s particular weight class.

  4. Becky Wiren

    I actually also live relatively close to Bruce, and I go to Parkview in Bryan and Ft Wayne. Now, I am fat but my test numbers are not bad, not bad at all for my age. HOWEVER, my nurse practitioner told me that I was heading towards pre-diabetes. I haven’t noticed the “fat” notation on my report from Parkview, but I didn’t read it as much as Bruce did. I glance at it enough to know it was just a rehash. Now I’ve got to wonder if I have that “fat” notation on my report. Will I go look? No, I can’t be bothered. 😉

  5. Karen

    I, too, am fat, and my clinic lists obesity as one of my chronic health issues. But my doc knows me well, understands the difficulty of losing weight even for people without mental health issues, and she doesn’t nag. OTOH, if I have questions about a new program or what have you, she’s willing to be very helpful. And there’s no subtext of “it’s about time”.

    What really matters is whether your doc understands you. If he’s on the ball, he will be helpful. He probably doesn’t have any control over what some self-important busybody decided to highlight when designing the information form.

    1. Guest

      I wouldn’t be surprised if the red was automated – just to draw the eye of the patient so they know what areas they need to address (alas numerous studies have indicated parents of overweight/obese children believe their children are a healthy weight – I’m unsure of results when people are asked to judge their own weight).

      I’m a programmer and we did error messages (you know, the “DOB is required” and the like) in red.

  6. Autumn

    I too dislike fat-shaming as it does no good. Would it help any if I said that a blood pressure of 97/53 might also have been in red? A fever too would have appeared in red as well.

    EMRs are strange beasts and cause providers many headaches.


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