Religion, women’s health, and obstetrician-gynecologists  by Mahmoud F Fathalla, Giuseppe Benagiano, Joseph Schenker,

Serge Rozenberg

The authors affiliatians are respectively from Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Assiut University, Asyut, Egypt, Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry, Sapienza University of Rome, Roma, Italy and Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Hadassah Medical Centre, Jerusalem, Israel,

published in Int JGynaecol Obstet 2022 Oct 22.  doi: 10.1002/ijgo.14503. Online ahead of print. 

Abstract: Religions continue to be a strong moral, even political, force in the world. They are often seen to be in conflict with women’s health; the authors argue that this should not continue to be the case. The conflict can be traced back to when religions had their birth and early development in patriarchal communities in which women were marginalized to the edges of society. In addition, religious leadership has traditionally been dominated by men and exclusive of women. The recent introduction of new scientific technologies, which has empowered women to regulate and control their fertility, challenged traditional norms and raised a religious-inspired moral panic. However, a recent initiative has been gaining momentum. An enlightened religious leadership and a new generation of feminist religious activists are calling for a review of the original texts and a reinterpretation in a sociocultural context that is different from when they were first revealed. Obstetrician-gynecologists, while having to practice in a socioreligious context and continuing to face challenges in providing health care in religiously diverse societies, have a social responsibility to stand by women and to uphold that religions do not and should not stand in the way of advancing their health and rights. 

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