An enormous debt is owed to the Jewish people for the astounding contribution made to the art, skill and science of medicine. The blessings of modern medicine have impacted more people in the most profoundly positive way than any other development in history. In the United States that revolution was led by Jewish-American doctors and scientists, including Jonas Salk, Albert Sabin and too many others to list. Jewish-American doctors are over-represented in the medical field by an absurdly disproportionate calculus; without their talent, scholasticism and hard work Americans’ health would be dramatically and disastrously affected.
Dr. Laura Kollab, the resident fired from the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio in September, 2018, profited as well from Jewish medicinal benevolence. She’s a graduate of Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine in New York, a Jewish-affiliated institution. But, she’s also the practitioner who is accused of threatening publicly on her social media feed to give Jewish patients under her care “the wrong meds,” according to CBS, NBC, CNN etc. who reported the story on January 2 and 3, 2019. Dr. Kollab is alleged to have broadcast other thoughts as well to give the average person seeking medical advice pause: support for Hamas, trivialization of the Holocaust, and calls for violence against Jews.
This incident is an example of the kind of assaults upon inviolable societal trusts that are anathema to basic public confidence in any state. Drunken airline pilots can’t be tolerated, nor venal judges be permitted to sell verdicts to the highest bidder while holding court. Doctoring most certainly falls into that category, and in fact, with the “first, do no harm” codicil from Hippocrates’ day, heads the list. There can’t be a sophisticated, technologically advanced, 21st century society which also features doctors allegedly threatening to cause the demise of patients based on disputed settlements in the Middle East, Kashmir, or anywhere else for that matter. So it’s quite germane to ask what the administrators of American medicine have to say about this.
The Cleveland Clinic not only fired Dr. Kollab forthwith but declared that “in no way do these beliefs reflect those of our organization.” Touro College weighed in as well: “Touro College is appalled by the anti-Semitic comments reportedly made by Lara Kollab, a graduate of the Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine.”
The American Medical Association (AMA), however, hasn’t uttered a word. A call to their headquarters in Chicago elicited a sort of surprise, as if the matter hadn’t come to their attention prior at all. The AMA is the pre-eminent medical organization in the United States so the queries were quite straightforward. The public might want to hear the AMA reaffirm its stand on matters regarding licensing of individuals expressing those kinds of sentiments in question, as well as delineate what protocols are in place to deal with issues of that sort regarding accreditation in the US.
A reply via email was said to be forthcoming, with the AMA suggesting a check at their website might reference statements concerning the subject in the interim. As of this writing, that email hasn’t arrived; it will happily be referenced here in a future article when and if it does.
In the meanwhile, perusing the AMA’s website certainly garners a cornucopia of news items focusing on any number of victimized groups. Almost all the highly-politicized topics, however, have the single thread in common of casting some aspersions on the American people and/or the current administration for a litany of maladies: substandard care for detained immigrants, unlawful drugs administered to migrant children, the low number of Native Americans entering medical school, etc. Whereas, again, not a syllable is dedicated to what allegedly is an overt and abominable assault on the one ethnic group absent from the AMA’s putative stalwart defense for one and all: Jews.
It’s certainly commendable for the AMA to take such an interest in the purported misdeeds of any and all parties and developments injurious to good medicine practices. Hopefully, though, that vigilance isn’t restricted exclusively to conveniently-chosen political opponents at the expense of protecting all of us—Jews and Gentiles alike—from explicit and blatant threats.