KARACHI: Academy Award winner Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy on Tuesday came out with an explanation on her recent controversial tweets about an AKU doctor, who had sent her sister a Facebook request after tending to her at the hospital.
Her tweets faced a severe backlash from people belonging to all walks of life on how poorly the matter was handled.
In her response posted on Twitter earlier today, she wrote: “My recent tweets about a doctor’s inappropriate behaviour has drawn much comment and controversy. The conversation has unfortunately steered far from the safety of women, unchecked unethical practices & harassment.”
On tweeting, doctor-patient privilege, women and harassment pic.twitter.com/2HoCK36wjb
— Sharmeen Obaid (@sharmeenochinoy) October 31, 2017
“As a public figure I receive unsolicited friendship requests from strangers all the time, and never once have I brought that up, however, this request to my sister was under different circumstances,” she said.
“Patients are vulnerable, especially women who trust a doctor to see them simply as a patient, in whatever medical state that may be. When that trust is broken it is a violation,” Sharmeen continued.
The whole episode began as Sharmeen Obaid’s sister visited the Aga Khan University Hospital (AKUH), Karachi for her treatment. A few days after the visit, she received a friend request from the doctor who had tended to her, an act that was tantamount to “harassment” according to Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy.
The Academy Award winner, soon afterwards, took to Twitter to express her anger. In a series of tweets, she said: “There are zero boundaries in Pakistan! Last night my sister went to AKU emergency and the doctor who tended to her tried to add her on FB.″
“I don’t quite understand how doctor tending 2 emergency patients thinks it’s ok to take a female patient info & add her on FB! unethical”
Soon after the Twitter episode, the accused doctor was reportedly suspended for “disregarding his ethical values and showing unprofessional behaviour.”
Chinoy was severely criticised by the social media on how the whole issue was tackled. The common opinion was that the act, albeit unethical’ wasn’t grave enough to have been labelled as “harassment”. Some even accused Chinoy of looking for opportunities to “defame Pakistan” whenever possible.