Satirical political shows are everywhere now. There’s been a recent trend where they zero in on an important, often underrepresented topic and highlight it by going into a lot of detail about the issues the topic is facing and why it’s important to address it. Think of people like John Oliver, who has covered subjects like warehouses and voting machines, or Samantha Bee, who has covered sexual harassment in the animation workplace and whitewashing in museums.
A common thread on these shows has been the focus on American healthcare and the issues with affording, accessing, and receiving the treatment that people need. These have included biases in medicine, getting organ transplants, and crisis pregnancy centers.
Recently, Hasan Minhaj (a former Daily Show correspondent like John Oliver and Samantha Bee) covered mental health coverage on his most recent episode of Patriot Act. He mentions the stigma surrounding mental health (especially within Asian-American communities) and acknowledges that the conversations about mental illness have become more mainstream, but when it comes to receiving treatment, insurance companies make it really difficult to access, even flat out denying treatment. While the information is bleak and can feel disheartening, it does give some context as to why some people can’t simply “get help,” or why the rates of people who receive treatment are so low, despite increasing numbers in mental illness diagnoses.
If you have a Netflix account, you can watch the episode there, or you can watch it below:
Have you ever had any issues accessing mental health treatment? Why do you think it’s so difficult?