Posts Tagged ‘the hindu paper article on doctor patient relationship’

It is heartening to read a series of open page articles in the India’s  national news paper  recently  which  started a  lovely debate about how the medical profession and doctor’s behavior is being perceived in this country . It all began  with this article by Dr Araveethi with   serious criticism  of the ways  and means  ,  by which doctors  indulge in  forbidden unethical acts . (mainly involving  financial  benefits ) Click on the Image to read the article.(Hope it works)


While most agreed with his observation  surprisingly one  response by Dr. Manoramma Gadde  tried to justify it !  promptly  evoked strong reactions for and against.

And this   response from  Dr .A.R Antony  to  Dr Manorama Gadde   CAME A WEEK LATER  seemed a  best one. Read for yourself

I  enjoyed  the  entire article by Dr Antony ,   especially when he observes  ethical doctors are a rare breed and even   be a laughing  stock among their colleagues. This is very much true  but as he rightly points out ,  the majority  of goodness should prevail over the minority of evil . ( Let us hope it is not vice versa ,   as  evidence  is mounting  against this assumption  )

What is the role of modern science in  making medical  profession into a  self less service to  service only for self ?

Read  on this article   : Truths when silent are not heard in consultation rooms

Is there acceptable level of unethical   acts  for doctors  ?

100 %   perfection  is never  possible  in any field .

Like permissible carbon levels in environment and permissible  contaminant in tinned  foods  one can suggest  doctors can  also be allowed a quantum of  immorality ! (This is akin to making corruption legal  still the  ultimate aim  is  to control it ) .Probably this is what Dr Manorama tried to convey in his article  !

What is the patients role in the perpetuation  of un-ethicalness  of doctors ?

A patient with  half-baked ( internet  fed ) medical knowledge  asking for various tests   is quiet common phenomenon .  This is termed as pressure prescription . Patient  interference in medical  decision-making and doctors yielding to it is also a rampant phenomenon. Empowering patients beyond a level is unreasonable or not a desired goal.

Why  doctors  continue to be noble   but many hospitals are not  !  How is this possible ?

We have willfully  accepted  medical care  to  become an industry  .When corporate hospitals are listed in stock exchange what do you expect of them  ?  I do not know  how  the current generation of  prepaid medical professionals manufactured   from various  medical  education  factories  in our country side  will behave  . It is them , who are  running these dubious   hospitals and nursing homes . In my observation a genuine and meritorious  medical student is  never  interested in starting a  hospital or nursing home .   He lacks both the business sense and also the  resources . Hence  he  or she  often becomes an employee  of  a hospital  or institution  run   by  capitation fee fed neo- medical  graduates  with  Dalal street mentality.

Counter point

There are thousands of doctors especially in  primary health centres  and emergency wards  working round the clock  in all those ill equipped  poorly staffed  Govt hospitals trying to save lives desperately  .  Similarly  many private practitioners sitting in the remote towns and villages  spending their precious  evening   caring for the sick.

So , the problem lies  mainly in  the  proliferation of  pseudo  – modern medical science  in an unregulated fashion  mushrooming into the urban and semi urban areas .

Solution ?

Never believe the private sector in the present form (*Total chaos)   will provide an inclusive health care  to our population. The recent WHO statistics say India is the only country where  permanent assets like houses ,  livestock are sold by people to get a  seemingly  modern and scientific  health  care .(Poor villagers are  asked to spend their entire monthly salary to  do a costly PCR test (Now proved useless)  to diagnose a AFB positive open tuberculosis  !)

The  current model of health care  in most developing countries   especially India  , which  our corporates are actively pursuing  is counter productive for both rich and poor.

A rich old  man is simply not allowed to die a natural death  without spending a chunk of his accumulated wealth ,  while a young , active   poor  men of our country  die for want of  those  same facilities which goes futile  those dying elite bodies !

*Let me drift  to a  different topic .  The private sector health care is totally disorganized , lies in  complete chaos though  enriched with infrastructure and other resources. What they lack is the terrible common sense. While the Govt sector has  a organised administrative and functional model   with huge expertise  which lies mostly dysfunctional due to various  reasons. Which is causing more danger to society ?   The answer is tough one  It would a  close race between  hyperfunctional private sector  or dysfunctional  Govt Sector .

I dream a day when these private sectors  take over the  Govt hospitals  and vice versa so that both can  complement the best between them.

Final message

Most doctors are really  noble  in their thinking. In  few  ,their action may occasionally touch  the lines of immorality .( The definition of immorality or unprofessional acts are  often reset according to our convenience  ) .

Even if a conscious doctor wants to do  genuine  work in the existing system , he is  rarely allowed to pursue it .  So ,  in   the current situation  most doctors are at risk  of  tasting the bad fruit  every day with or without  their knowledge.

The doctrine of   hospitals  lack  ethical code , while  it is expected  from  individual doctors   is the single important factor that is responsible for the present chaos in medical care delivery

 So in my final analysis  I agree with many of the arguments on  both sides  .Even though  ethical doctors are available they are in a very short supply  . We need much ,  much more  . . .   I am afraid  the future looks bleak !  . . .  with humble excuses to all optimists out there.

What is  your  take on this issue ?

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