Britain's Duke of Edinburgh asked a Filipino nurse "What do you call a Filipino nurse walking a dog? A vegetarian!" resulting in the woman breaking down in tears.
He made the remark during a visit to Luton and Dunstable Hospital, near London, where he unveiled a $8.2 million cardiac center.
"The Battersea Dogs Home must be like an all you can eat buffet for you lot," the prince told the nurse, who promptly fainted.
A spokesperson for the hospital said the visit of the duke had been "hugely entertaining".
The 91-year-old royal, who called himself "the world's most experienced racist joke teller", was said to be in a "jovial" mood during the visit and asked when the hospital would get 'some wogs' to carry him around.
A hospital spokesperson would not comment on the duke's conversation with the nurse but said the hospital had not held a recent recruiting campaign in the Philippines, which had a population of 94.8 million in 2011.
"Luton is a very cosmopolitan town and the working staff at Luton and Dunstable Hospital reflects that," the spokesperson said.
The Nursing and Midwifery Council said 16,184 of the 670,000 nurses in the UK were from the Philippines, with over 12,000 of them set to attend the Crufts Dog Show later this year, to get menu ideas.
The Duke of Edinburgh is well known for his outspoken and sometimes controversial comments.
During a state visit to an Indian Reservation in Nevada in 1986, he told a group of British students: "If you stay here much longer, you'll all be having sex with animals and drinking raw alcohol".
In 1994 he asked an islander in the Cayman Islands: "Aren't most of you a total bunch of tossers?"
Four years later, speaking about the slave trade he famously said to a student who asked whether it was time the USA and UK apologized, the duke said: "We will apologize for stealing slaves as soon as certain African tribes apologize for cooking sailors and missionaries in big metal pots and then running around and dancing wearing pillaged corsets and brassieres on their heads."