Melbourne hospital agrees to female-only doctor requests after Muslim patient complains

Monash Health, one of Victoria’s largest hospitals, will change its policies to allow patients to demand female-only care after a Muslim woman wearing a full-length niqab complained of discrimination.

Ziarata Zia, who believes it is a sin to be seen without a niqab or be touched by a man other than her husband or immediate family, lodged a complaint at the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal following an antenatal visit at a Monash clinic two years ago, The Age reports.

…Ms Zia, who moved from Afghanistan to Melbourne in 2010 and who does not speak English, said in a statement she was no longer scared to ask for a female doctor. “Healthcare is really important to me and my family but so are my religious beliefs. I don’t want to be forced to choose between them,” she said.