Challenges Faced by Single Muslim Doctors in USA

A muslim doctor holding android tablet in her hand

The first study that looked at the relationship between religious identity and discrimination in the workplace towards Muslim doctors in USA found that almost half of them felt under scrutiny in their work than their colleagues, and more than one in four claimed to have faced discrimination based on religion in their professional lives.

About 10 percent of doctors reported that patients turned down treatment due to being Muslim, according to the latest study.

A review of the results indicates that over the last ten years, there has been an increase in the number of Muslim physicians facing discrimination based on religion, job loss, and seeing patients reject their medical treatment because of their Muslim identity.

“Muslims working in healthcare are struggling,” Padilla said. Given the importance of diversity and inclusion these days, the professor of emergency medicine, bioethics, and medical humanities believes that distributing this research to academic circles, Muslim circles, and hopefully policy circles will lead to improvement in hospital systems and healthcare. Additionally, she is the Director and Chairperson of the Initiative on Islam and Medicine.

Single Muslim Doctors in USA: Muslims are heavily represented in healthcare occupations.

Muslims represent less than 1 percent of the populace in The United States, according to an analysis from the Pew Research Center. This is a tiny percentage; “Many Americans have never knowingly met a Muslim,” said panelist Meira Neggaz, the head of the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding, the institution that aims to create an objective, solutions-oriented research into the issues and opportunities for American Muslims.

“Our healthcare system and medical field rely heavily on Muslims, despite their relatively small population,” Neggaz explained. Neggaz cited Michigan as an example, where Muslims comprise just 3 percent of the population of the state, and yet they include over 15% of licensed medical doctors within the state. Furthermore, Muslims are 10% of Michigan’s pharmacists as well as 77% of the dentists, she noted.

She said the proportion of Muslims in medicine is high, and the impact and achievements are substantial. “Muslim doctors aren’t just practicing medicine. They often make major innovations and advancements across the whole healthcare area.” She provided some examples of individuals who came up with novel treatments and Muslim doctors who offered medical assistance to the less fortunate.

Matchmaking hurdles 

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Platforms that facilitate meeting Muslim singles in the USA are crucial to meeting this challenge. From community events and social gatherings to online platforms, these avenues allow single Muslim doctors to meet like-minded individuals with similar values, beliefs, and cultural backgrounds.

Single Muslim doctors in USA face the added pressure of finding a life partner who shares their values and aspirations. Islam stresses the significance of entering into marriage with maturity and mutual understanding as a guideline for companionship. 

A Muslim-friendly workplace is essential for healthcare systems

Not only is the proportion of Muslims in the field of medicine However, their achievements and impact are also significant. She said, “Muslim doctors aren’t just practicing medical practices. They are frequently accountable for bringing about substantial innovations and advancements across the medical field.

” Muslim doctors have developed new therapies, and many offer charitable healthcare, ” she added. “Our medical system needs to treat Muslim physicians equitably and without discrimination, not just for their benefit, but also for that of the whole healthcare system.”

Psychological Toll On Muslim Physicians

“The impact of this obviously may take a toll on the mental health and anxiety of people experiencing these issues,” Neggaz explained. “We have discovered through our research that following the election of 2016, which saw an abundance of political discourse regarding Muslims and Muslims, there was a lot of anxiety and stress, as well as worry about the safety of oneself.

In particular, nearly fifty percent of Muslim women and over 30 percent of Muslim men worried about their safety as a family or personnel. Many experienced anxiety and stress at the point of seeking help for mental health.”

She also noted that other researchers have observed that groups that are targeted or who hear negative comments about their community can internalize negative aspects. “A lack of motivation can negatively affect mental health, self-esteem, identity, motivation, and performance,” she said.

Padela and his research team show that when Muslim physicians place more emphasis on their faith and practice it, they suffer corresponding negative consequences, such as higher levels of discrimination in the workplace and depression and lower workplace tolerance for prayer.

But, it also shows that “on an optimistic note, more participation in religious activities is associated with lower perceptions of discrimination in the workplace and discrimination by patients and positive experiences of being accommodated religiously at the workplace.

Religious significance attracts negative experiences, but more religious practices appear to ward off these.”

Building On Groundbreaking Research

In 2021, Padela carried out the same quantitative study as his groundbreaking 2013 study but included a qualitative aspect by conducting interviews to better understand the context of the participants’ responses.

Because national databases of doctors do not include religious affiliations, Padela’s team relied on the membership list of national clinical organizations that explicitly incorporate religious affiliation.

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