The physician should be amongst those who believe in God, fulfill His rights, are aware of His greatness, are obedient to His orders, who refrain from His Prohibitions, and who serve Him in secret and in public.


The physician should be endowed with wisdom and practise graceful admonition. He should be cheering not dispiriting, smiling and not frowning, loving and not hateful, tolerant and not edgy. He should never succumb to a grudge or fall short of clemency. He should be an instrument of God's justice, forgiveness and not punishment, coverage and not exposure.

He should be so tranquil as never to be rash even when he is right. Chaste of words even when joking ... tame of voice and not noisy or loud, neat and trim and not shabby or unkempt... conducive of trust and inspiring of respect ... well-mannered in his dealings with the poor or rich, modest or great . . in perfect control of his composure ... and never compromise his dignity, however modest and forbearing.


The physician should firmly know that 'life' is God's ... awarded only by Him ... and that 'Death' is the conclusion of one life and the beginning of another. Death is a solid truth ... and it is the end of all but God. In his profession the physician is a soldier for "Life" only ... defending and preserving it as best as it can be, to the best of his ability.


The physician should offer a good example by caring for his own health. It is not befitting for him that his "do's" and "don'ts" are not observed by himself. He should not turn his back on the lessons of medical progress, because he will never convince his patients unless they see the evidence of his own conviction... God addresses us in the "Qur'an" by saying, "and make not your own hands throw you into destruction". The Prophet says, "Your body has a right on you" ... and the known dictum is "no harm or harming in Islam".


The physician is truthful whenever he speaks, writes or gives testimony. He should be invincible to the dictates of creed, greed, friendship or authority pressurizing him to make a statement or testimony that he knowsis false. Testimony is a grave responsibility in Islam. The Prophet once asked his companions, "Shall I tell you about the gravest sins?" When they said "yes," he said "claiming partners with God, being undutiflil to one's parents ... "and afier a short pause he repeatedly said "and indeed the giving of false talk or false testimony."


The physician should be in possession of a threshold-knowledge of jurisprudence, worship and essentials of Fiqh to enable him to give counsel to patients seeking his guidance about health and bodily conditions with a bearing on the rites of worship. Men and women are subject to symptoms, ailments or biological situations. For instance, women during pregnancy may wish to know the religious ruling pertaining to prayer, fasting, pilgrim-age, family planning, etc. Although 'necessity overrides prohibition' the Muslim physician-nevertheless-should spare no effort in avoiding the recourse to medicines or therapy or surgery, or medical or behavioral dictates that are prohibited by Islam.


The role of a physician is that of a catalyst through whom God, the Creator, works to preserve life and health. He is merely an instrument of God in alleviating people's illnesses. For being so designated, the physician should be grateful and forever seek God's help. He should be modest, free from arrogance and pride and never boast or hint at self-glorification through speech, writing or direct or subtle advertisement.


The physician should strive to keep abreast of scientific progress and innovation. His zeal or complacency and knowledge or ignorance, directly bear on the health and well-being of his patients. Responsibility for others should limit his freedom to expend his time. As the poor and needy have a recognized right in the money of the capable, so the patients own a share of the doctor's time spent in study and in following the progress of medicine.


The physician should also know that the pursuit of knowledge has a double indication in Islam. Apart from the applied therapeutic aspect, pursuit of knowledge is in itself worship according to the Qur'anic guidance, "And say ... My Lord... advance me in knowledge" and "Among His worshippers ... the learned fear Him most".. and "God will raise the ranks of those of you who believed and Those who have been given knowledge."

(Taken from Islamic Code of Medical Ethics Kuwait Document, International Organization of Islamic Medicine 1981).