Map Fail: Medical Journal Erases Israel


HRsuccessThe HPCSA has responded to your complaints with an email that includes the following:

Please accept our apology for the delayed response and any inconvenience caused, as we are currently receiving a high volume of e-mails.


With reference to the article on Gift of the Givers and their humanitarian work done over the years: we take note of the printing error on page 13 where a part of the state of Israel is incorrectly marked as an area of activity of the aforementioned charity organisation. We wish to state that neither the HPCSA or Gift of the Givers intended to create the impression that the territory in question was part of another country. The HPCSA apologises for this oversight.

It’s fair to assume that the high volume of emails is a result of the many of you who took the time to respond. While it is, of course, too late to remedy the map fail in the print copy of the HPCSA’s magazine, the organization has, nonetheless, been forced to address the issue, acknowledge the error and apologize.

Thank you to our readers for holding the HPCSA to account.


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An article in the 2016 Bulletin of the Health Professions Council of South Africa includes a world map that has erased the country of Israel and replaced it with the label, “Palestine.”

This calls to mind other recent feats of geographical legerdemain, such as the maps published by National Public Radio last month and by CNN last November:  both of which eliminated Israel and replaced it with the label “Palestine.”

map replaces Israel with Palestine

Map from article in 2016 Bulletin of the Health Professions Council of South Africa, replaces “Israel” with “Palestine.”

The good news is that a quick response from readers like you caused both NPR and CNN to take this issue seriously.  Each publisher quickly corrected their mistaken map, and NPR specifically cited HonestReporting’s readers as the reason for the change.  The HPCSA Bulletin is a print edition, so we cannot hope to actually make a change to the magazine itself, but we can make the organization aware that their irresponsible publishing will not go unnoticed.

One can’t help but wonder why so many journalists seem capable of labeling the rest of the world and its other 195 countries correctly, yet continue making this “mistake” when it comes to Israel. Nonetheless, if they keep making this mistake we will keep catching their mistake, and holding them to account. Thanks to readers like you.

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