- The Washington Times - Saturday, December 3, 2016

An anesthesiologist who suggested Michele Obama resembles a monkey lost her positions at the University of Colorado’s School of Medicine and a Denver hospital this week after her comment caused a commotion within the local medical community.

Dr. Michelle Herren, a pediatric anesthesiologist, landed in hot water on Wednesday after the Denver Health Medical Center got wind of a remark she had posted from her personal Facebook account in response to a post containing a photograph of the first lady.

“Monkey face and poor ebonic English!!! There! I feel better and am still not racist!!! Just calling it like it is!” Dr. Herren wrote.

Denver Health said on Wednesday that it had stripped Dr. Herren of her access to patients pending an investigation, and on Friday announced that the two parties “mutually agreed that Dr. Herren will voluntarily resign her employment from Denver Health after a ten year career of providing care to its patients.”

In the interim, University of Colorado officials said they planned to cut ties as well with Dr. Herren, who holds a non-paid faculty appointment.

“We are beginning the process to terminate Dr. Herren’s faculty appointment,” university spokesman Mark Couch said Thursday. “She has expressed values that are at odds with ours and she has compromised her ability to meet the teaching and patient care mission of the School of Medicine.”

The terms of the doctor’s resignation from Denver Health were not made public, and Dr. Herren did not immediately respond to requests for comment, a local CBS affiliate reported. Dr. Herren most recently earned an annual salary from Denver Health worth $363,000, according to the station.

Prior to announcing her resignation, Denver Health said it was “deeply disappointed” and “offended” by Dr. Herren’s remarks, which it said contrasted with the medical center’s mission and values to its staff and patients.

“Denver Health proudly serves people of all races, genders, sexual orientations,and social backgrounds — and our staff and patient population truly reflect our diverse community and nation. We are reaching out to all of our patients, employees and physicians to reinforce our culture, mission and beliefs that all individuals regardless of their race, religion, ethnicity, gender or sexual orientation are deserving of dignity and respect,” the hospital said Wednesday.

Speaking to KMGH amid this week’s uproar, Dr. Herren said her Facebook comment was taken out of context and that “she didn’t know using the term ‘monkey face’ was racist,” the network reported.


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