Edited by: JV Staff
In addition to monitoring the coronavirus pandemic, it has now been reported that the New York State Health Department is under fire by Borough Park, Brooklyn assemblyman, Simcha Eichenstein. Eichenstein represents Brooklyn’s 48th assembly district and was preceded by former Assemblyman, Dov Hikind. Boro Park is a predominantly Orthodox Jewish area.
Eichenstein has demanded that the state Health Department suspend hospital resident Dr. Walid Khass from New York Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital for allegedly tweeting nearly 60 anti-Semitic messages, according to a New York Post report.
In a letter to the health department Eichenstein focused on three of Khass’ Twitter messages spanning from 2012 to 2017 in which he allegedly wrote, “Spit on you, Jew dogs!,” “Go beat up a Zionist” and “Join Hamas. You don’t gotta tell me twice.”
According to the Post report, Eichenstein wrote: “At least fifty seven of Dr. Khass’ tweets have been documented as calling for violence, spreading anti-Semitism, supporting terror, and calling for the destruction of Israel. Clearly, Dr. Khass’ decision making ability is compromised and does not live up to the high standards of his noble profession.”
“I am deeply disturbed by the NYS Supreme Court’s decision to restore the residency of Dr. Walid Khass — a virulent anti-Semite whose disturbing history of anti-Semitic posts on social media undermines medical ethics and basic moral standards,” Eichenstein said.
“I believe his conduct renders him unfit and even dangerous to treat a significant portion of patients, many of which are my constituents, at New York-Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital,” the letter continued, according to the Post report.
Eichentstein told The Post that the DOH “should step in. They could suspend him now instead of waiting on the court.”
Also in a letter to the state Health Department dated September 17th, Roz Rothstein and other officials of the StandWithUs organization wrote: “Dr. Khass has allegedly posted alarming and violent discriminatory and anti-Semitic statements on his public Twitter account for years. His purported comments specifically target Jews, Israelis and Zionists, repeatedly call for violence, express blatant mistrust for Jews, refer to Jews and Israelis by derogatory names, convey anti-Semitic conspiracy theories, and most egregiously—particularly for a medical professional in charge of protecting lives—include sentiments indicating his wish that Jews should die.”
A court battle has ensued over the last year with Presbyterian Hospital’s attempt to fire Khass, according to the Post report. In February of this year, a judge in Brooklyn’s Supreme Court issued a ruling saying that the hospital should honor its commitment to provide medical training to Khass. The Post reported that the hospital is awaiting its appeal of that decision.
The hospital said in a statement, “Pursuant to court order, Dr. Walid Khass joined NYP Brooklyn Methodist as a first-year resident. As the matter is in litigation, it would be inappropriate for us to discuss it further.
“Every member of the NYP team is expected to provide the highest level of care regardless of a patient’s race, age, disability, national origin, ancestry, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, parental status, or any other individual characteristic,” the statement said, according to the Post report.
The Post reported that a spokesman from the Department of Health, Jonah Bruno said, “There is no place in our society for racism or bigotry of any kind, and we deplore the type of despicable conduct described in Assemblyman Eichenstein’s letter. “The Department’s Office of Professional Medical Conduct (OPMC) aggressively investigates any physician who may have committed misconduct, and the Board for Professional Medical Conduct takes swift action when warranted, including suspending and revoking licenses and referring cases to law enforcement.”