Ruling on Muslim women working as nurses and doctors

My wife is studing to become a nurse at a University, is it lawful to: -examine patients(male or female) and give them baths which are apart of the class projects.
-examine men as a nurse in non-emergency situations at a non-muslim hospital.
-work at a home for the mentally ill where the co-workers are male and the patients are also.

Praise be to Allaah.

If a woman finds that she has to work because of necessity, she is permitted to work outside the home, as is indicated by the fact that the two daughters of Shu’ayb used to water the sheep, and the story of Asma’ bint Abi Bakr working outside the home. If a woman is widowed with children, and has no breadwinner and is receiving no money from the Bayt al-Maal (treasury), it is permissible for her to earn a living. Although we say that a woman is permitted to work outside the home when it is necessary, she should nevertheless do only the work she needs to do in order to meet her needs. If a woman has professional skills which not every woman possesses, and which are needed by other woman and society as a whole, then it is permissible for her to practice her profession outside the home, so long as she adheres to the conditions prescribed by sharee’ah and has the permission of her legal (shar’i) guardian. The evidence that it is permissible for the woman to work outside the home in a field where there is a need for her work, as long as she adheres to the conditions prescribed by sharee’ah, is to be seen in the fact that at the time of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), midwives used to attend women in labour, and skilled women used to practice circumcision, and he did not condemn them for doing so. It is also known that Rufaydah al-Ansaariyyah used to treat the wounded in her tent, which had been set up in the mosque for that purpose. She was very skilled in treating the sick, and her work was done with the knowledge and express permission of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him). Sa’d ibn Mu’aadh was transferred to her tent for treatment. This indicates that it is permissible for a woman to practice her profession outside the home, and by analogy we may deduce that it is permissible for a female doctor to open a clinic outside her home for the treatment of women and children. By doing this, she is fulfilling the duty of fard kifaayah (a duty falling on the entire community – if some people fulfil it, responsibility is lifted from the rest, otherwise all will be held accountable. Translator). Such clinics make it easy for sick women to come to a female doctor, hence they no longer have to uncover their ‘awrah before a male doctor when they need treatment. Continue reading

Pharmaceutical company offering bribes to doctors for fear that their products may not sell

I am a pharmacist working in one of the pharmaceutical companies as an advertising rep selling some of this company’s drugs. We give gifts to the doctors in the hospitals and private and public clinics, such as pens and watches on which is written the name of the product or the name of the distributing company. This is so that the doctor will prescribe this medicine or the medicines that we distribute to the patients. Most of the competing companies do that and do it to a great extent, such that we find ourselves forced to do it, otherwise our products will not sell. Hence patients fall victim to competition. What is the ruling on doing such things?.

Praise be to Allaah.

It is not permissible to do such things, and it is regarded as a bribe which is haraam, because it makes the employee limit himself to the company that has given him a gift and ignore the other companies. This is consuming people’s wealth unlawfully and harming others. What you must do is to avoid this and warn others against it, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) cursed the one who gives a bribe and the one who takes it. We ask Allaah to keep us safe and sound.

From Fataawa al-Lajnah al-Daa’imah, 23/576

There is another wrongful action which the questioner refers to, which is:

This action may also harm the patient, as the doctor may prescribe this medicine to him, in the hope of getting a gift from the company that produces it, even though some other medicine may be more beneficial to the patient.

And Allaah knows best. Continue reading

Owner of a medical laboratory giving doctors some money so that they will send their patients to him

Is it permissible for the owner of a medical laboratory to make an agreement with some doctors so that they will send their patients to him in return for a payment for these tests?
Please note that this will not be paid for by the patients and that the charges for these tests will be the same as the charges in other labs.

Praise be to Allaah.

It is not permissible for the owner of the lab to give the doctor who sends a patient to him for testing a share of the money, because that is regarded as a kind of bribe, which is haraam.

And Allaah is the Source of strength. May Allaah send blessings and peace upon our Prophet Muhammad and his family and companions. Continue reading

Ruling on gifts given by pharmaceutical company reps to doctors

My question is about what is done by advertising reps of pharmaceutical companies. Nowadays some or most of these companies operate by means of gifts or bribes. They give gifts to doctors so that they will prescribe the drugs that are produced by these companies, and the reps fear for their positions in the companies if they do not do that. Many doctors will not prescribe drugs for patients because they have not been given gifts, and will only prescribe the drugs sold by those who have given them gifts. So the reps are forced to compete with other companies in the matter of gift giving. What is the ruling on this?
Is it regarded as a case of necessity because he fears losing his job, or not? Especially since he may have financial obligations which he must fulfil.

Praise be to Allaah.

The company rep who gives gifts to doctors so that they will distribute the drugs of that company and not others is regarded as the intermediary between the one who is giving the bribe and the one who is taking it. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) cursed all three and said: “May Allaah curse the one who gives a bribe, the one who takes it and the intermediary between them.”

And Allaah is the Source of strength. May Allaah send blessings and peace upon our Prophet Muhammad and his family and companions. Continue reading

Advice concerning the issue of women and doctors

What is your opinion on the issue of woman and doctors and the advice for Muslim sisters and parents concerning this matter?

Praise be to Allaah.

Undoubtedly the issue of women and doctors is an important matter, and in fact it causes a great deal of trouble. But if Allaah blesses a woman with taqwa (piety) and insight, then she will take precautions and pay attention to this matter. She should not be alone with the doctor and the doctor should not be alone with her. The authorities [in Saudi Arabia] have issued orders and directives stating that this is not allowed. Women must also pay attention to this matter and should try to seek competent female doctors. If they find a female doctor, then praise be to Allaah and there is no need for a male doctor. But if a woman needs to see a male doctor because there are no female doctors, then in the case of necessity there is nothing wrong with her being examined and treated by him. This is one of the things that are permitted in case of necessity, but if she has to uncover part of her body then she should not do that if she is alone with the doctor, rather it should be in the presence of her mahram or husband, if it involves uncovering something ordinary like the head, hand or foot, etc. If her ‘awrah must be uncovered then she should have her husband with her, if she is married, or another woman, which is better and is more on the safe side; or there should be one or two nurses present. But if another woman, apart from the nurse, can be with her, this is better and is more on the safe side and more removed from suspicion. But as for being alone with the doctor, this is not permitted.  Continue reading

He has tuberculosis and the doctors have advised him not to fast for five years

I am a tuberculosis patient. I was under treatment for two years and the doctors advised me not to fast, and scared me that if I fast the disease will come back to me. They advised me not to fast for five years. What is the ruling on doing this?.

Praise be to Allaah.

Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“So whoever of you sights (the crescent on the first night of) the month (of Ramadan i.e. is present at his home), he must observe Sawm (fasts) that month, and whoever is ill or on a journey, the same number [of days which one did not observe Sawm (fasts) must be made up] from other days”

[al-Baqarah 2:185].  Continue reading

He has a stomach ulcer and the doctors have advised him not to fast

There is a man who has had a stomach ulcer for eight years, and he is still undergoing treatment. The doctors have advised him not to fast lest it make the illness worse. Is that permissible for him?.

Praise be to Allaah.

He is allowed not to fast, but he has to make it up after he recovers if there is the hope that he will recover. If that is not the case and it is not possible that he will recover from this sickness, then he may feed one poor person for each day of the month of Ramadaan. End quote.  Continue reading

The doctors told him never to fast, then he recovered five years later

A person had a chronic disease and was advised by doctors not to ever fast. He saw other doctors abroad and was cured by Allah’s grace after five years. For five years he did not fast Ramadaan. What should he do now? Should he make fasting these months up or not?.

Praise be to Allaah.

If the doctors who gave him this advice were trustworthy Muslims who understand the nature of this sickness, and they told him that there was no hope of recovery, then he does not have to make up the fasts and it is sufficient for him to feed poor people, but he should fast in the future. End quote.

Shaykh ‘Abd al-‘Azeez ibn Baaz (may Allaah have mercy on him)  Continue reading

The doctors aborted the foetus without her knowledge, out of fear for her life

Five years ago my mother got pregnant and in the fifth month of pregnancy the amniotic fluid leaked and she became ill. When she went to the doctor they decided to abort the foetus because it was weak, and he said that if it was left inside it would die and decompose which would poison my mother and put her in danger. My mother refused vehemently because she knows that that is haraam, and she asked for a different doctor, but the second doctor’s view was the same as the first doctor’s. When she refused they forced her to stay in the hospital and they did not let her leave. She was examined by a committee of doctors and they insisted on doing the abortion surgery, and they say that they would bear responsibility with regard to the child. One day, because my mother had so vehemently refused to have this operation, they took her to the operating theatre, saying that they were going to do an ultrasound to check on the foetus, but they did the operation and aborted the foetus. Until now she says that she does not know whether the foetus was alive or dead at the time of the surgery, because they did the operation on her without examining her or checking the heartbeat the foetus. My mother’s question is: Is there any sin on her for what happened when she had an abortion in the fifth month of pregnancy, without her consent? If that is the case, what expiation should she offer?.

Praise be to Allaah.

Firstly:

If the matter is as described, there is no sin on your mother – if we assume that there is any sin involved – because she did not consent and the operation was done without her knowledge.  Continue reading

The doctors advised delaying the circumcision of a sick child

our son is almost 4mths old. He had a heart transplant at 91/2weeks of life. We did not get him circumcised because the doctors said it would interfere with his health. Now he has another problem. His testes have not descended into the sac. We consulted with the urologist and he would like us to wait until our son is 9 months old. Is it permissible for us to wait?

Praise be to Allaah.

If there is a necessity which means that this child cannot be circumcised at the time prescribed by sharee’ah, it is permissible to delay it, because Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“And do not kill yourselves (nor kill one another). Surely, Allaah is Most Merciful to you” [al-Nisaa’ 4:29]

“Allaah burdens not a person beyond his scope” [al-Baqarah 2:286]

And the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “If I command you to do a thing, do as much of it as you can.” (Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 6858; Muslim, 1337). And there is the shar’i principle that cases of necessity make things which are ordinarily forbidden permissible.

Circumcision does not usually result in harm, but if the doctor who has told you not to have your son circumcised knows that it could cause real harm, there is nothing wrong with waiting until the child is able to undergo this procedure.

“One of the things which cancels the obligation of circumcision is when the child is weak and is unable to bear it, so much so that that his life would be in danger. If his weak state persists, he will be excused for not being circumcised, because at most, circumcision is (obligatory) but because he is incapable of doing it, he will be excused. This is the same as in the case of all other obligatory duties.”

“In Sharh al-Hidaayah it says: … he should be prevented from doing it, and there are many other similar examples, such as doing ghusl with cold water in very cold weather when one is sick, or a sick person fasting when his life may be placed in jeopardy if he fasts, or carrying out the hadd punishments on someone who is sick or pregnant, etc. All of these are reasons why the action should not be carried out, and they make it no longer waajib (obligatory).”

And Allaah knows best. Continue reading