Addressing racist parents in a paediatric setting: the nuance of zero tolerance policies

Qureshi Z, Suleman S, Richards A, Sheather J, Bishop H.

Published 13 December 2021 : BMJ 2021;375:n3067

Healthcare professionals need clearer guidance on responding to racism in paediatric settings, argue Zeshan Qureshi and colleagues

Everyone has a right to healthcare, but on occasion this can conflict with the right of healthcare professionals to dignity in the workplace. One example is when a patient refuses the care of a healthcare professional on the grounds of race. This is an experience that many doctors from an ethnic minority background have faced: in one US study, 23% of ethnic minority doctors reported that a patient had directly refused their care due to their race. The Medical Workforce Race Equality Standard in the UK also reported that 34.4% of doctors in training from an ethnic minority background had experienced “bullying or abuse from patients, relatives, or the public” in the past year, including racist abuse.

Dr Zeshan Qureshi

About the author

Children's doctor. London. Mental health. Global health. Medical education. TEDx talk (doctor well being).