Health officials at Yale University apologized to junior Frances Chan for the “months of anguish” they put her through in forcing her to gain weight.
According to her story on Huffington Post, “Yale University Thinks I Have an Eating Disorder,” doctors told Chan that they needed to start monitoring her 90-lb weight after a breast exam.
They told her if she did not comply, they would put her on medical leave, with a clinician saying, “If it were up to the administration, school would already be out for you. I’m just trying to help.”
Even though she insisted that she was healthy and naturally thin, they forced her to take weekly weigh-ins and urine tests, blood tests, and have meetings with mental health and nutritionist professionals due to her low BMI.
After gaining two pounds by gorging on ice cream, cookies, and Cheetos, she still didn’t meet their 95-pound weight requirement. She reported that when she doubted she could pack on the pounds, a nurse told her, “If we don’t tackle your low weight now, it will kill you.”
After “being forced to meet a standard that I could never meet,” Chan eventually broke down and enlisted help.
She switched doctors and had her parents to speak with the health department. She reported on her Facebook Friday that Yale officials have apologized and the saga has ended.
Her Facebook post from April 4, 2014:
Just visited Yale Health with my parents and met with a new doctor. She apologized repeatedly for the “months of anguish” I went through and admitted that BMI is not the end all be all. She also looked at my medical records since freshman year (which the previous clinician had not done) and noted that she saw that my weight had remained around the same. So she trusts that I do not have an eating disorder and admitted that “we made a mistake.” She also does not want me to feel uncomfortable coming to Yale Health if I get a flu or something. I do still have to see them, but at most once a semester. And I’ll be away for the coming year, so….LET TIME BE A MIGHTY RIVER!!!
When reached for comment, University Press Secretary Tom Conroy told Business Insider, “Federal health regulations (HIPPA) prohibit Yale from discussing the health care of any individual, whether it’s a student or an employee, so we are unable to comment on Frances’s care. Yale provides exceptional health care services, and the health and welfare of all of our students is our primary concern.”
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