Relative's request: No male doctors (without the PLEASE)

8:37 AM

I am sure most of my readers have encountered the full version of this letter. I am unable to verify the authenticity of this letter, thus I crossed out all the names involved. This letter should have been confidential in the first place. It is a good effort by the husband to uphold his rights as a husband. Although the words used may be a bit harsh with the emphasis on HALANGAN.

Things are different now compared to 20 years ago. During those days, there might not be enough female doctors to attend to female patients, especially when it involves the female private parts. In normal circumstances, the request for female doctors will be entertained. Provided there are female doctors. If it is a normal delivery, the midwives will be able to handle the delivery very well and I have a lot of trust in them. However, when the delivery becomes complicated a male doctor might have to attend to the female patient. Sometimes there is only one MO doing everything from reviewing patients at the ward and performing emergency LSCS (C-section). To completely HALANG a male doctor from doing his job will be detrimental to the health of the baby and mother. There are still hospitals which only has male consultants in O&G. If all else goes wrong, the consultant is called.

I personally feel, the letter should be rewritten in a different manner. Instead of MELARANG, it should be "meminta supaya kakitangang wanita yang mengendalikan kes isteri saya". Either that or add a clause at the end of the letter:

I will take full responsibility of any morbidity that will happen in the event of any delay in treatment of my wife as a result of me not allowing any male staff to attend to my wife despite being informed on the inadequate female staff....signed and dated by husband.

Shared responsibility is better than just shoving every fault to the medical staff...provided medical staff EXPLAIN properly to patients and relatives.

These are my opinions only. I appreciate any constructive criticism and comments. Maybe by discussing this issue, we can create a better environment whereby both patients and medical staff can combine efforts to get the the best outcome.

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  1. First, as a non Muslim, i am looking at it from this point of view:
    1. that the husband may have undergone some bad experience with male doctors that resulted him to have different views on his own species.
    2. that he could be judging male doctors using the same perspective of his in viewing a female spesies.
    3. citing his choice, he could opt for a female O&G in a private hospital and it will be case closed.

  2. My non medical friends frequently ask me, what does it feel like delivering babies...with a smirk on their face.
    I usually tell the, I'm a professional. I do my job the best I can. There is no feeling of lust at all. I do what is best for the patient and the baby.
    Most Muslim men fail to understand the concept of Maqasid Shariah, whereby lineage (nasb) and life (nafs) are 2 of the 5 components. In the condition of darurat whereby the only way to save both lives is by the presences of a male doctor,what is not permissible (in this aspect, the handling of a female by a male individual) becomes read more about this as I am not an authority in this topic.
    However, if there are female doctors around...I say why not (less work for guys ;) )
    Private hospitals can offer options but it is costly. The cost of delivery of my boy recently was RM 2000+ (after discount) at a private center. It is out of reach for most people.

  3. I pledge for anyone with a better understanding of the Islamic aspect to comment further. Thank you

  4. U can "strongly request" this as a husband, as long as u are either married to a doctor or have a first degree relative who is a doctor. At least that way u are contributing and doing your part to lessen the burden on female doctors when such requests are made. Better yet, have them work in the o&g dept and u can b that understanding husband who will handle the kids when your wife is oncall
    ur wife is not the only female who has a right here, that female doctor you requested is a daughter/sister/wife too.
    By the way does it matter to him that it was a female or did he speciiy what religion they would be?would he prefer the non muslim female doctor over a muslim male doctor?

  5. I had an experience with a husband who had a problem. There was a specific request for Muslim females only to attend his wife. Unfortunately, the 2 HO on call was me (Chinese male), Indian female, and our MO were Indian male and Malay male. Even the specialist on call was an Indian lady. The mother had required a vaccum delivery for fetal distress but we had to counselled hard as he strongly insisted that his request be granted. The problem was, the patient herself do not mind as she felt that she was willing to comply with anything for the best of the baby. In the end, the procedure was delayed due to persistence counselling and after 3 hours, we had a baby with low APGAR score, a mother with 3rd degree tear with PPH with hypovolumic shock 2' delay in suturing (due to counselling husband again) Was quite an ordeal and we manage to save both mother and child. Sometimes, out of anger, some may say serve the husband right, but the patient herself and her baby were innocent and they had to suffer due to the husband's stupidity and insistence when there are no better option at that time.

    1. Thanx for sharing your experience. Weird, sometimes in REAL emergencies, patients don't consider it as emergency

  6. this true story is bad...kasihan the wife and the baby....

  7. I have commented on a Facebook entry regarding this matter.

    The husband might have written this letter out of best interest for him and his wife (menjaga aurat and maruah). Personally as a male-to-be-husband-soon and a doctor, he has his rights to do so, and the medical personnel needs to comply to this.

    However, few issues arise from this:
    a) Language used is a bit harsh. That might be the reason for dissatisfaction of some reading it. "Kalau camtu, buat sendirilah!", "pergi privatelah!" etc.
    b) Shared responsibility - maybe better to have advanced directives, ie. should any complications arise, husband will take responsibility in the delay of management / if there is a need for urgent intervention, male doctors can get involved if deemed necessary.

    Other than that, I suppose it is less patients for the male doctors! Hehe...

    We shouldn't be prejudice dealing with patients (but easier said than done also, right?). We can only hope things get better for us medical staff and patients.

    1. I agree. The husband has a right. However most people are all talk but no substance. When something goes wrong, they will be quick to shift the blame to medical staff. They don't want to take responsibility. This is why a clause is needed i.e. at own risk.
      I disagree with some people commenting "kalau nak sangat buat la sendiri or pergi private"...its like being one of those politicians saying
      "ayam mahal, makan ikan", "kalau tak suka Malaysia leh duduk overseas" etc. It doesn't solve anything

  8. In my opinion, in this case, The husband should find women doctor. I think now it is easy to find her.
    Regards too from Young Entrepreneur
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