July 2020 marks 72 years of Britain’s free nationwide healthcare system, the NHS – and to celebrate the occasion, a Muslim doctor graces billboards up and down the country.
Dr Farzana Hussain, a British Bangladeshi Muslim, has been recognized for her work as a General Practitioner (GP) at a medical center in a deprived area of South London. The mother of two has, like medical staff worldwide, been on the frontline during the coronavirus pandemic.
Dr Hussain is among twelve National Health Service staff who have been photographed especially for the anniversary by acclaimed British photographer Rankin, known for his portraits of Kate Moss, the Rolling Stones and even Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.
The NHS pictures can be seen across the country on billboards and in shopping centers, not to mention at the iconic Piccadilly Circus lights in central London – undoubtedly the most famous advertising spot in the UK.
Dr Hussain hasn’t let it go to her head. “It’s difficult to put into words how privileged I feel to be able to go to work every day and make a difference to people’s lives and to help battle this global pandemic.
Now more than ever, it’s important that we see the humanity that makes up our GP practices, community services and hospitals. Every member of staff has their own story, fears and hopes for the future. I think Rankin’s photography brings this out really well.”
You can read her full statement on the official NHS page.
This is a great achievement not just for the Muslim community, but also specifically Muslim women, the hijabi community, the Bengali community and the South Asian community. It is yet another proud moment for Muslims in the UK – earlier in the year a British key worker graced the cover of Vogue – towards finally achieving the recognition British Muslims deserve.