In a recent New York Times article, Uppsala University in Sweden has admitted a convicted murderer and Nazi advocate to their medical school. He had been previously admitted to a different Swedish medical school before getting kicked out for falsifying documents. The United States is classically strict on its medical school applicants, not allowing anyone entry with a felony conviction. A recent change in policy now requires all misdemeanor offenses to be reported on medical school applications. When the primary clause of an occupation is “do no harm”, how could any medical school knowingly grant entry to a convicted murderer? As the article implied, this is likely a huge oversight.
This raises some very difficult questions about the admissions process. How deep do they dig when researching the background of an applicant? This could be an extreme case but it makes you think about the potential for other felon physicians practicing elsewhere. Exceptions to the felony rule could probably be made under certain circumstances. For instance, it’s a felony to be convicted of selling marijuana which would render an applicant incapable of becoming a physician, but should it? It could be argued to accept applicants on a case by case basis, but that still seems inadequate. I don’t see a problem with condemning an applicant for committing murder while being associated with neo-Nazi hate groups. It should not even be a question!