“I can’t operate on this man. I am Jewish.”

The family of the patient, who has made a full recovery, have called for the doctor to be struck off, alleging that by walking out he failed to uphold the Hippocratic Oath, while members of the public have also voiced their anger at the surgeon, claiming all people deserve care, irrespective of their political views. Others however have rallied to his defence.

“We’ve had lots of calls from residents who have praised the doctor’s moral courage,” said his hospital in a statement, and Jorg-Dietrich Hoppe, head of Germany’s Federal Medical Association, has stood by his Jewish colleague.