A Lawsuit Filed by a Surgeon Showcases Gender Disparities and Workplace Discrimination in Medicine  

The surgeon faced a dilemma: if the patient is already extremely ill and placing them back on the operation table may bring about a fatal outcome, or if sewing the patient up can only prolong their life with unbearable pain, this may simply not be an option.  

At the time of the second year, Dr. Deborah Keller was a trainee colorectal surgeon at New York-Presbyterian/ Columbia University Irving Medical Center, and she sought to be affirmed in her right choice.  

She had the nurse ring her supervisor, Dr. Pokala Ravi Kiran, M.D., head of the colon and rectal surgery division.  

“The patient is a goner. No wonder she is so withdrawn. “Close. Kiran interrupted her, and one of her doctors, who is a woman, yelled, “What’s the issue?” at her in front of several other medical staff members.  

The court judge during the 2019 operation in no way was a solitary case for Kiran, as on that occasion testifies Keller. She does state that it was not an uncommon thing, and he also comments on her appearance as well, which also required her to do some administrative duties, which male employees were being excused from and offered not a higher salary than male candidates from the beginning.  

While complainants elicit their school to take the discriminating disparities, lawyers, in a complaint on November 20, 2021, in the court of the federal court of Manhattan, hypothesize that New York City’s high-profile medical centre has a reputation for deterring gender discrimination.  

Attorneys on behalf of New York-Presbyterian Hospital refused to return phone calls and emails regarding Keller’s coverage. A lawyer employed by Columbia University and Kiran requested that NBC News contact Robert Hornsby, a rep for Columbia University. He opted not to talk about the accusations, claiming the school does not comment on pending litigation.   

Considering how sick the patient was, the director could have given the same advice as the one she did. However, she cannot help but feel that her boss would have responded to the other surgeons on her team — all men — rather differently.   

“I would have achieved the same end, but it just would not have been embarrassing them in front of a hall full of people.” This was my first death as a physician, and I just needed to assure myself that I was doing the right thing.   

Her lawsuit alleged that her teammates were infrequent targets of such preferential treatment. It claims that upon the engagement of two male attending physicians, Keller’s boss took her office and said it was necessary for the new physicians. She was rather transferred to an unlabelled room at the passageway outside her division while her old office was left untouched. The hospital countered that Keller had filed several discrimination complaints, and a research entity funded by the hospital was “sabotaged” and claimed the lawsuit. 

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Nilanjana Basu
Nilanjana is a lawyer with a flair for writing. She has a certification in American Laws from Penn Law (Pennsylvania University). Along with this, she has been known to write legal articles that allow the audience to know about American laws and regulations at ease.

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