More Medical Students Resorting To Prostitution
The number of medical students involved in prostitution has increased significantly over the last decade. 10 years ago, only 4 percent of students said they knew of a peer in prostitution, this figure increased in 2006 to 6%, and currently stands at just under 10%.
The report highlights the clear association between the prevalence of prostitution among students and increasing tuition fees. According to the author many students have huge amounts of debt as a result of the increasing costs of both tuition and living.
The number of calls from students contemplating prostitution has increased, according to the English Collective of Prostitutes (ECP). A spokesperson for the ECP explained that several medical students believe "prostitution is the only means of financial survival. [...] Jobs in shops and pubs that students usually take up are increasingly scarce and low paid."
According to medical schools, sex work among students is not extensive. Although they have no specific rule on prostitution, they advise that medical students act within the General Medical Council's guidance for medical practice, "Duties of a doctor." The guidance does not specifically state that a doctor cannot be involved in prostitution. In addition, there have been no reported cases in which a patient's health has suffered as result of the doctor working in prostitution.
The author concludes that as there is no official guidance on prostitution, students have no clear answer. She explains that it is worrying when students believe "they have no choice but to resort to prostitution." In addition, she questions if the "hike in fees" will result in more students entering prostitution.
An associated report examines the case of a medical student who faced either "dropping out of medical school" or prostitution. The author, who would like to remain anonymous, states that "if studies are not grossly affected by how they are funded [...] then it doesn't matter how we make a living." The authors opinions have been criticized by older student's had feelings of "condemnation" and "disgust" towards a medical student using sex work to clear his debts.
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