I recently saw a new doctor here in the US. As part of the ream of forms I had to fill out, there was a section where I was apparently supposed to identify my ancestries, and it referenced several European backgrounds where I know, to a fair genealogical confidence, that I have ancestry, so I marked those. There were separate line items for “German” and “Bavarian”. I’ve never seen such a detailed questionnaire on ancestry from a doctor.
What is the purpose of this? Are Bavarians considered different from other people or other Germans in some way that could realistically make a doctor make a different decision? Are Bavarians considered especially subject to certain rare genetic conditions?
Doctor: “Prep the patient for a colonoscopy!”
Nurse (flipping through papers) : “Wait, he’s Bavarian with a touch of Irish!”
Doctor: “Oh, whoops. Definitely don’t want to colonoscopy a Bavarian. Their colons are usually filled with gunk that messes up the scope. Set him up for an MRI, stat.”
Or is this likely to just be a statistical thing related to equal access or something, and they listed Bavarian because someone once claimed that the doctor was biased against Bavarians?
Also, it seems that many doctors (not just this one) are keen on knowing your marital state. I can understand why they want to know if you are married or not married, for example so they can get consent for treatment if you become incompetent/unconscious. But why does it matter to them if I am “single”, “divorced”, or “widowed”? Do doctors feel that, on average, divorcees respond better than never married people to certain treatments and both of them respond better than widowed people? It can’t just be related to sexual activity, because they asked nothing at all about that, and saying you are single nowadays doesn’t mean you aren’t sleeping with someone tonight.