Medics who treated wounded protesters in Bahrain’s pro-democracy demonstrations are being rounded up, beaten, tortured and placed on trial, simply because they did what any right-thinking doctor or nurse would do. They tried to save the lives of people who had been shot by thugs in the pay of the Saudi-backed Khalifa monarchy.
Meanwhile, in a disgraceful display of cynicism and moral cowardice, the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland has refused to intervene on behalf of the doctors, many of whom are its graduates, saying only that it doesn’t want to comment on political matters.
This is how ethically compromised the RCSI finds itself. Characterising the arrest, torture and imprisonment of doctors as a political matter, one of the world’s top medical schools declined to become involved.
Simple. The answer is money.
The RCSI’s involvement with Bahrain is worth €200 million through its constituent college, the Medical University of Bahrain, which confers RCSI qualifications. Faced with the loss of such an enormous contract, the RCSI struggled with its conscience and won by a knockout in Round One.
Money or morality?
Price or principle?
The RCSI came down abjectly on the side of cash, and remains silent while many of its graduates are beaten, imprisoned and in some cases facing the death penalty simply because they acted as any good doctor should.
What does that say about the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland?