London, Thanasis Gavos

Almost one in three female operating room staff in the UK’s NHS have been sexually assaulted by colleagues in the past five years, according to research by the British Surgical Review.

Specifically, 63% of women and 23% of men in UK surgeries said they had experienced sexual harassment from colleagues.

29.9% of women and 6.9% of men reveal that their harassment turned into sexual assault, such as touching genitals and/or breasts or even rape.

In the case of rapes, they are reported to have occurred in the workplace, but also in work-related settings such as seminars, conferences and social events with colleagues.

Also, 11% of women reported experiencing violent physical contact related to career opportunities, that is, harassment by superiors who demanded such compensation in order to provide career advancement.

The research finds that “there are relatively few measures in place to protect the potentially vulnerable in settings such as medical conferences”.