Anti-Jewish racism soars by 95% in healthcare sector, says report

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Anti-Jewish racism soars by 95% in healthcare sector, says report

70 percent of antisemitic incidents are from work colleagues, says survey of more than 200 Jewish healthcare professionals

NHS Hospital
NHS Hospital

Ninety-five per cent of UK Jewish health care professionals (HCPS) in the UK have noted a rise in the antisemitism they face following the Hamas terrorist attacks on Israel on 7th October, a new survey has found.

In total, 73 percent of respondents from the healthcare sector revealed they had dealt with at least one antisemitic incident since the attacks.

Most worryingly, 70 percent said that these incidents came from their colleagues. Furthermore, 48 percent declared that the did not feel safe in clinical settings, whilst just 29 percent said they feel safe around their colleagues.

The survey, led by Dr Joseph Greenwall-Cohen in collaboration with Alpha Omega (The Jewish Dental Association), took in the views of 293 UK Jewish HCPs. It found that 44% had or were thinking about changing their behaviour as a result of the huge rise in antisemitism they were encountering.

Dr Greenwall-Cohen commented:”Whilst there are many supportive colleagues and environments, trust and collaboration within a healthcare team is paramount. To think that less than a third of us feel safe around our colleagues is a testament to the severity of anti-Jewish racism at this present time and highlights the need for this to be resolved urgently.”

Professor David Katz, executive chair of the Jewish Medical Association UK said that “a key question to ask now is how does this affect the interaction of the UK Jewish community within the society in which they live and work and also when and how will the UK’s healthcare system devise strategies to combat this unacceptable form of harmful discrimination.”

The results also call into question how healthcare regulators and professional bodies are dealing with the worrying rise in antisemitism. Sixty-eight percent of respondents said that they lacked confidence in such organisations to take adequate action.

A spokesperson for the General Medical Council told Jewish News: “Our personal beliefs standards are clear that doctors – like all citizens, are entitled to their political opinions. Our focus is on the effect that expressions of political or other personal beliefs may have on patients’ or public confidence in the profession. In sharing opinions and raising awareness around certain issues doctors must consider how doing so may affect the public’s trust and perception of doctors.”

A General Dental Council spokesperson commented: “Our primary purpose is to maintain patient safety and public confidence in the dental professions. As the regulator of dental professionals, we must investigate serious concerns. These can include misconduct, such as inappropriate or unprofessional behaviour, or discrimination against patients, colleagues and others. Our standards for the dental team are clear that every dental professional will maintain appropriate personal and professional behaviour so that their conduct, both at work and in their personal life, justifies patients’ trust in them and the public’s trust in the dental profession.”

Despite the growing concerns amongst Jews working in healthcare, 60 percent of antisemitic incidents went unreported.

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