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Survey finds 60% women shun male gynecologists

A survey made by the Shanghai Women's Disease Treatment Commission shows that nearly 60 percent of women with gynecological diseases feel embarrassed to see a male doctor and will go to a female doctor instead.

Only 15.8 percent say they can accept a male doctor who is middle-aged or older, and another 24.1 percent say they feel no difference between a male doctor and a female doctor.

The result is similar to a survey conducted in 2006, the commission says.

It says the doctors are trained to serve patients regardless their gender, age and background and patients should give them respect and trust. Moreover, the Chinese Law on Medical Practitioners requires the presence of a female doctor or nurse while a male doctor is examining a woman's private parts.

Doctors, no matter male or female, must inform patients and get their approval before checking their genitals and the examination must be conducted in a secluded area to protect patient privacy.

Dr Dai Liangtu of the PLA Shanghai No. 411 Hospital says social conventions have given a lot of pressure to male doctors specializing in gynecology and obstetrics. "I've taught only one male student in the past 30 years," he said.


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