Page last updated at 18:59 GMT, Wednesday, 1 July 2009 19:59 UK

Dentist 'had Islamic dress code'

Omer Butt
Dr Butt regards himself as 'a Muslim first and a dentist second'

A dentist told Muslim patients he would only treat them if they wore Islamic dress, a disciplinary panel has ruled.

Dr Omer Butt, of Prestwich, Greater Manchester, ordered two women to wear head scarves before he would see them, the hearing was told.

The professional conduct committee of the General Dental Council (GDC) will now decide whether this impaired Dr Butt's fitness to practise.

Dr Butt worked at the Unsworth Smile Clinic from April 2005 to June 2007.

'Rewards offered'

The GDC committee found: "Your evidence was that you regard yourself as a Muslim first and a dentist second, and it is clear that you were using your position as a dentist to seek to influence patients as to non-clinical issues.

"You have explained that you had a moral and religious obligation to persuade other Muslims to comply with Islamic requirements.

"You admitted that you would offer rewards to some patients who complied with the dress code.

"The committee concludes that these actions are more consistent with a person who has gone beyond mere persuasion or request and is seeking to impose a dress code."

This is the second time the dentist has appeared before a disciplinary committee over his stance on traditional Muslim dress.

In September 2007, Dr Butt received an admonition from the GDC after being found guilty of discriminating against a female patient by refusing to treat her unless she wore "appropriate Islamic dress".

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