Staff in at least 17 hospitals have been secretly banned from wearing veils, an investigation has found. Front-line NHS staff, including doctors and nurses, have been told they cannot wear a niqab – a full veil which covers the face – while in contact with patients. Some hospitals have gone as far as to say veils cannot be worn in any situation where communication is essential – including staff training. Read more >>
This cartoon is by Paul Thomas from the Daily Express. The scene is a hospital operating theatre. A surgeon about to operate on a patient. He is wearing a surgical cap, mask and gown, and is holding a scalpel in his left hand. He tells the patient, "I haven't taken the veil —I always wear this to operate."
1. A niqab (Arabic for "veil" or "mask") is a cloth which covers the face worn by some Muslim women.
2. A surgeon is a doctor who operates on a patient or carries out an operation on a patient. The operation takes place in an operating theatre (or operating room in American English).
3. The expression to take the veil means "to start wearing a veil". The expression is sometimes used when a woman becomes a nun. • Miss Blanchard took the veil at the age of 24, assuming the name of Sister Cyria Costa.