Gynecological exams for virginity certificates contravene the profession’s code of ethics on several grounds, including breaching patient confidentiality, said Charles Bernard, president of the Collège des Médecins, in an interview.

The practise is outrageous, repugnant, irrelevant and unacceptable, he said.

“Imagine a doctor who does a gynecological examination with the sole purpose of … it goes beyond the imagination. And it’s degrading to women,” Dr. Bernard said.

The College was responding to a study by two ethics specialists from the Université de Montréal who were called upon by a school nurse and other health professionals after five incidents of families seeking virginity checks in the last 18 months in Quebec.