Unpredicted gender preference of obstetricians and gynecologists by Muslim Israeli-Arab women

Hadar Amir*, Yumna Tibi, Asnat Groutz, Ami Amit, Foad Azem

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: To investigate the gender preference of Muslim Israeli-Arab women regarding obstetricians/gynecologists, and identify other features that affect their choice. Methods: The study included 167 responders to an anonymous questionnaire. Results: Around one-half of the responders had no gender preference regarding family physicians, but most (76.6%) preferred a female gynecologist. Likewise, most responders preferred pelvic examinations (85.6%) and pregnancy follow-up (77.8%) by female gynecologists. Additionally, 61.7% preferred consulting female physicians for major obstetrical and gynecological (OB/GYN) problems. The reasons for female preference were embarrassment (67.7%), feeling comfortable with female gynecologists (80.8%) and the notion that female gynecologists are more gentle (68.3%). The three most important factors which affected actual selection, however, were experience (83.8%), knowledge (70.1%) and ability (50.3%), rather than physician gender (29.3%). Multivariate analysis revealed that other qualities and importance of background variables of the gynecologist were independent predictors of gender preference. Conclusions: Although Muslim Arab-Israeli women express gender bias regarding their preference for gynecologists/obstetricians, personal and professional skills are considered to be more important factors when it comes to actually making a choice. Practice implication: We suggest that the ideal obstetrician/gynecologist for these women would be female, though skilled, knowledgeable, and experienced male would be appropriate.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)259-263
Number of pages5
JournalPatient Education and Counseling
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Gender
  • Muslim
  • Obstetricians/gynecologists
  • Women


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