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Former London School Of Economics Academic Suggests There Should Be Fewer Female Doctors

Male doctors are "better value for money", as women take part-time jobs, he said.

08/04/2016 16:44
Stefan Wermuth / Reuters

Student doctors hit out at a retired LSE economist who suggested this week that universities should restrict the number of women "allowed" to be doctors.

Dr Roger Alford, said in a letter to The Times: "I understand that there is now a very high proportion of women students in our medical schools, and that many women doctors are likely in due course to move to part-time appointments."

The former emeritus reader in economics at LSE, continued: "Given that the role of medical schools must be to deliver the full-time frontline doctors that we need, surely the number of young women allowed to begin training should be considerably limited to allow in more young men who will give a full career of medical service and provide society with much better value for the money spent on medical training."

Surely the number of young women allowed to begin training should be considerably limited to allow in more young men Dr Roger Alford

Medical students and doctors were quick to hit out at the comments.

"To limit the opportunity of any individual to pursue a career in medicine based on their gender is outdated and unjust," third-year medical student Aayushi Pandya told HuffPost UK.

"Women contribute immensely to what was once seen as a man's area of work. Gender-based discrimination is not an answer to any problem - it is a problem in itself," she added.

Dan Kitwood via Getty Images
Student medics have hit out at Dr Alford's comments

Fellow KCL student Akhilesh Pradhan agreed: "The comments made by Dr Alford reflect the discriminatory opinions still held by educated individuals in this country.

"Women and other minority groups contribute to the strength of the NHS. Denying capable individuals the right to practice as a doctor on the grounds of economic measures is sad to see in this day and age," he told HuffPost UK.

The comments came as junior doctors went on strike for the fourth time over their new contracts. 

The number of young women allowed to begin training should be considerably limited to allow in more young men who will give a full career of medical service Dr Roger Alford

A spokesperson for LSE said: "The letter is a personal view of a retired academic. It does not reflect LSE's position."

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