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Woman Claims She Was Kicked Off Plane After Flight Attendants Mistook Her Eczema For Monkeypox

Photo: @jacqueline.ngu / TikTok / Markus Mainka / Shutterstock 
Jacqueline Nguyen, Spirit airplane

The spread of monkeypox has many Americans wary and on-edge. However, it also means that those with pre-existing skin conditions are a target of unnecessary fear and discrimination

Jacqueline Nguyen knows this all too well. 

She claims she was kicked off of a Spirit plane after flight attendants mistook her eczema rash for monkeypox. 

Nguyen and her wife, June, were boarded on a Spirit Airlines flight in Los Angeles. They were approached by flight attendants shortly after being seated. 

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“They just asked my wife and I to get off the plane and go to the jet bridge,” Nguyen said in an interview with Inside Edition. “They were just like, we want to know about that rash.” 

The rash the attendants were referring to was the result of an eczema outbreak. Eczema is a skin condition that causes patches of dry, inflamed, and itchy skin to develop anywhere on the body. 

Nguyen has been suffering the condition her entire life. Spirit Airline officials assumed that the rash was monkeypox. 

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They asked Nguyen to provide proof of her condition in the form of medical documentation. She documented the experience on her TikTok account

In the heartbreaking video where she is reduced to tears, Nguyen explained what she and her wife were subjected to. 

   

   

“They had me get off the plane in front of everyone along with my wife to interrogate me about the eczema I’ve had my whole life,” she wrote. 

“They asked me to provide medical documents and told my wife to watch her attitude. I’ve never been so humiliated in my life.” 

“Misinformation leads to discrimination/hostility. Everyone with a visible non-contagious skin condition has been anticipating this,” Nguyen captioned the post. 

Other TikTokers flooded Nguyen with support. 

“I’m so sorry you had to go through that hun,” one user commented. 

“This just made me so sad; I’m so sorry :(“ another user wrote. 

Others who deal with skin conditions like Nguyen expressed their fear and concern that they could very well wind up in a similar situation. 

“As an adult with cystic acne I have been scared, I’ve been trying so hard to cover up out of fear. Sorry, this had to happen to you,” one user shared. 

“I have psoriasis… the idea of this happening in an airport…how would you suddenly provide documentation?? Like no one carries that,” another user commented. 

In a follow-up TikTok video, Nguyen shared that she and her wife were allowed to reboard the flight after presenting a tube of her prescribed eczema cream. 

   

   

However, this did not free her from the humiliation of the experience or discrimination. 

“As we walked down the plane again, a flight attendant was walking down the aisle and when she saw me, she promptly turned around and walked the other way, not even looking at me as if eye contact would spread it,” she shared. 

“This has happened to other people who were not so lucky to have anything with them as ‘proof.’” 

Nguyen hopes to educate and spread awareness of the discriminatory behavior she and others with skin conditions are forced to deal with through her experience in the age of monkeypox. 

“The REAL reason monkeypox is spreading is misinformation,” she shared in a TikTok video. 

   

   

It is unfair to assume anything about one’s skin, especially if you are not the one who has to wear it every day. 

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Megan Quinn is a writer at YourTango who covers entertainment and news, self, love, and relationships.

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