By Katie Gu
History recently repeated itself when technicians from two major laboratories refused to accept blood samples from patients testing for monkeypox.
This August, the U.S. saw the largest increase in monkeypox cases in the world. In the midst of a nearly 80% increase in U.S. cases, phlebotomists from Labcorp and Quest Diagnostics reportedly turned away potential monkeypox samples. Such refusals dangerously parallel instances of diagnostic discrimination against HIV/AIDS patients in the 1980s and 1990s.
Within both eras, such actions have fueled stigma, propagated misinformation, and encouraged scapegoating in the middle of public health crises.