Do you think Patients would confuse me for a doctor if I'm South Asian and male?

  1. 0
    I'll keep it brief: I'm male and South Asian (East Indian), and I applied to a few nursing programs already.
    Hopin' I get some fat letters in early February!

    I actually volunteer at a nearby hospital, and it's really a simple job.
    I just end up sitting in the ICU Waiting Room and do homework, and escort visitors during visiting hours.

    But one thing that always gets me is HOW often visitors will come up to me and ask me if I'm studying to be a doctor.
    I tell them I want to be a nurse, though

    I can't help but wondering... if I were in the scrubs and working in a hospital as a nurse, do you think folks'd assume I were the doc? :-/

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  2. 33 Comments...

  3. 3
    i'm a male and white and its usually the old men that ask if im studying to be a doctor.
    Not_A_Hat_Person, Otessa, and nursel56 like this.
  4. 10
    I'm female & Irish/Scottish American. I am sometimes mistaken for a doc. When they ask I tell them I am just an astronaut.

    Good luck with nursing school! Being a nurse is GREAT.
    AmericanRN, CCL RN, brian, and 7 others like this.
  5. 1
    Not sure how being South Asian (East Indian) plays into the equation but yes, it's very likely people will assume you are studying to be a doctor.
    Jessy_RN likes this.
  6. 6
    I don't think South Asian has anything to do with it.

    Sometimes it depends on the culture or age of the patient. Sometimes if a patient is older they will assume you are the doctor, just because you are male. Here in Miami we have a huge Spanish population, and they always tend to assume all male nurses (or in my husband's case EMT) are doctors.

    Just old chauvinistic assumptions. Woman = nurse, Man = doctor. Pffttt!!!!

    W. )
    Trubie, sunnycalifRN, MassED, and 3 others like this.
  7. 1
    We have a couple males in my nursing program who get mistaken for doctors. As well, the oldest person in our class is a male who is 46 years old. He is mistaken by nurses, doctors, AND patients hahaha... he is a close friend, we giggle about this every now and then.
    Otessa likes this.
  8. 2
    Men often get mistaken for doctors because we still continue to experience the same old prejudices: men are doctors, women are nurses.
    MassED and scoochy like this.
  9. 2
    I'm a white female in my early 50's working in the ED, and patients will occassionally assume I'm a doctor. I think that it's sometimes just the way you come across when you first come in contact with a patient.
    BluegrassRN and Otessa like this.
  10. 0
    only one way to find out

    good luck in school
  11. 2
    Quote from NurseWendy1969
    Here in Miami we have a huge Spanish population, and they always tend to assume all male nurses (or in my husband's case EMT) are doctors.
    Just curious...did you mean to say Hispanic population? Because in Miami, I would assume that the Hispanic population is more Cuban/Puerto Rican/Dominican with few Spaniards.
    StarryEyed, RN and ObtundedRN like this.

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