A story has been doing the rounds over the past few days concerning that thorny issue of Muslim women’s attire. It features a Czech-born doctor who has been suspended from a Sheffield hospital following a dispute with a female colleague over her refusing to remove her hijab during an operation.
Dr Vladislav Rogozov reportedly confronted the unnamed surgeon who refused to remove the headscarf – which he says contained specks of blood from previous procedures – and abandoned the operation at the Royal Hallamshire Hospital before reportedly accusing Dr Rogozov of racial discrimination.
Although the incident took place in 2013, the story appeared this week in The Sun (TOP DOC AXED IN BUST-UP AFTER REPORTING MUSLIM SURGEON’S HIJAB WAS ‘SPOTTED WITH BLOOD’ BEFORE AN NHS OPERATION) before being picked up by The Daily Mail (CONSULTANT IS SUSPENDED BY HOSPITAL AFTER CONFRONTING SURGEON WHO PLANNED TO OPERATE IN HER HIJAB DESPITE IT BEING AGAINST SAFETY REGULATIONS), The Daily Mirror (NHS CONSULTANT SUSPENDED AFTER ‘RACIAL DISCRIMINATION’ CLAIMS WHEN HE DEMANDED MUSLIM SURGEON REMOVED HER HIJAB) and The Daily Telegraph.
So far, so scandalous. A doctor accused of racism and dismissed simply for following a hospital dress code in the interests of patient health and safety? Certainly sounds like a case of ‘political correctness gone mad‘.
But on closer inspection things appear a little different. For a start, despite what the headlines say, Dr Rogozov was NOT dismissed following this incident. The hospital backed him following an investigation and the female surgeon was the one to leave the hospital.
The Sun does at least make this fairly clear in its article, but The Mail and The Mirror are more misleading. The Mail reports in its byline that a ‘complaint was raised against Dr Rogozov and he was suspended‘ before giving the truer account some five paragraphs into the article, whereas The Mirror doesn’t even mention these facts.
The real reason for the doctor’s suspension, it emerges, is because he recently spoke of this and incidents involving other colleagues in an interview with an overseas online blog. His comments were then repeated in a Slovakian newspaper and a Czech website.
He has been suspended pending an inquiry, which is a standard procedure in such circumstances. According to social media guidelines issued by the British Medical Association, doctors and medical students are advised against speaking informally about work practices on websites and forums and it’s considered ‘particularly inappropriate‘ to make negative comments about colleagues.
Spokesman for the hospital Dr David Throssel confirmed that the suspension had nothing to do with raising patient safety issues but about concerns raised about the tone of the comments in the blog. ‘The content and nature of the views published are currently being investigated‘, he said.
The hospital may have good cause for concern if the tone in the interview is anything like that on Dr Rogozov’s blog (in his native Czech language) which focuses on the ‘ongoing Islamisation of Britain‘. In a series of posts claiming that Britain is being destroyed by multiculturalism, he compares his hometown of Sheffield to Pakistan and makes absurd claims such as 80% of young London Muslims sympathise with ISIS and that Islam will be the dominant religion in the UK within 20 years. (you can visit the blog and put a random paragraph into Google Translate to get an idea of the ‘tone’ used).
One wonders, given the nature of the blog, whether there’s more than meets the eye to the original incident and racial discrimination accusations. But this is pure speculation. The facts as they present themselves suggest that the hospital dealt fairly with the initial dispute and are now launching a justifiable inquiry into a European doctor who seems to be doubling up as some kind of PEGIDA spokesman. Certainly not the ‘political correctness gone mad‘ tale the newspapers were trying to imply.
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