An 84-year-old Kurdish woman, Karakız Baymaz, was denied medical treatment at a hospital in Istanbul, Turkey, because she couldn’t speak Turkish. Her son, Osman Nuri Baymaz, who accompanied her, told Mezopotamya Agency (MA) that the attending physician insisted on a certified Kurdish interpreter.
During the incident at Fatih Sultan Mehmet Education and Research Hospital on Wednesday, Baymaz offered to translate for his mother but was refused. “I filed a complaint against the doctor and the hospital,” he stated. Later, the hospital sent an Arabic interpreter instead of the requested Kurdish one. “This is a human rights violation,” Baymaz added.
Confirming the incident, a hospital representative said that a mental competency report is required in psychiatry, making layperson interpretation inappropriate. The hospital has Arabic interpreters due to the rising Syrian population but lacks Kurdish interpreters, despite the country having a population of 15 million Kurds. “A Kurdish interpreter must be requested from the Ministry of Health,” the representative explained.