Doctor’s Debacle! – My Views


Last week was tumultuous at best. Began with the airing of Aamir Khan’s latest episode of Satyamev Jayate, this time bringing up of the issue of malpractices in medicines. If you missed out on the show, you can view it on Youtube here or view it below.

Many in the medical fraternity, thought it was irresponsible of Aamir to do a half-baked show, showing only the one-half of the story. Leaving out the good side of the story.

Yesterday I got a mail from a doctor friend of mine… I somewhat agree with him stating “why can’t doctors make money”… but on the other hand I have grown hearing doctors in in a noble profession and shouldn’t commercialize it…

I Agree with the Doc, but have my own two small bits for him. On the show Aamir made it clear quite a few times that (and I’m sure you wont deny it either) that most of them have made it a profession to loathe. I agree beating up resident doctors doesn’t serve anyone’s purpose, but at the same time in private hospitals the cases put up are very true.

However, coming back to the topic. Please read below… its worth an argument on Satyamev Jayate.

Dear Mr. Amir Khan,
“NOT ALL DOCTORS ARE GREEDY”
“THERE IS NO PROFESSION THAT IS ABSOLUTELY CLEAN”
“DOCTORS ARE OBLIGED TO SERVE BY CHOICE, NOT BY COMPULSION”
Sir,
I have been a big fan or your work, life and principles. I am also a fan of ‘Satyamev Jayate’. But I was shocked to see the episode on 27th May, 2012. You are an Icon. You should have thought well and done the homework before doing such a biased show. There are only two people in the film industry that are being taken seriously by the
thinking class of society, You and Amitabh Bacchhan. So, when you give such a biased and one sided version of a story, it hurts. Speaking about such a thing on a “commercial” TV show is bad. (I am sure you have taken a big amount, only doctor are supposed to do charity and social work, not actors!!! Right!) I want to highlight few important points here. And yes I am qualified to make observations as I am a
medical student.

1. Your guests and audience (the words were almost put in their mouth) said that private colleges charge a capitation fee of 40 – 50 Lacs for MBBS,
you should have also produced some evidence of such practice. Like you call a victim in all your episodes, why not here? And do the same story Engineering, Architecture, Law and MBA colleges, do you think they are clean? Why target doctors alone?

2. You said Since 2001, government opened 31 medical colleges and 106 private institutes were opened. – Please note that today in India, there are a total of 181 Private and 152 Govt Medical colleges. So the number is not as bad s you
projected. Don’t project only the time period which suits your story. Either give a complete picture or do not give a picture at all! And also, please find out how many of these private colleges are owned by politicians? 95% of Private colleges in India are owned and run by politicians. It is a bloody nexus between politicians and MCI. The corruption by politicians is to blamed for the mess, not doctors!!!

3. One of your guest (Dr. Gulhati) said that doctors ask for 30% commission from Pharma companies to write their drugs. That is baseless, over-the-roof and sensationalizin g the matter. That is as true as “Most Leading actors ask newcomers to sleep with them” or “Lawyers take money from both the sides in a legal battle” or “Most chartered accountants teach their clients how to save tax and also pass info to taxman on where his client saved tax”. I know all of you will shout “Where is the proof?”. So are doctors!!! I am not trying to sensationalize things as you did on your show by shading those fake tears, but just trying to project that allegations are easy to make. I know you will say that this was the opinion of our guest, and not yours. But you provided a platform for these fake allegations.

4. You compared the numbers of Licenses cancelled in England and in India. I must say your team is quite resourceful and please collect and compare following details also –
a.Number of doctors beaten on duty by goons from various political outfits in government hospitals in UK and India in last 10 years, and also the number of people convicted for such crime.
b.The Stipend (Salary a post-graduate trainee doctor/intern gets) or Salary and accommodation facilities provided to the doctors of the two countries.
c.The duty hours and working conditions of the doctors of the two countries.
d.The academic and research infrastructure being provided to the medical students.

5. You said that the most brilliant students who take up medicine, should take it only for service to mankind, they should go to other fields if they want to earn. Why? Are we living in imperialism? Are doctors not allowed to earn and spend a good life? You were asking Dr. Devi Shetty whether he can do humanitarian work and Earn at same time? This is like asking Amirkhan or Shahrukh-khan their income and generalizing it for every actor in the industry (Even junior artists). Sir, just as there are only few Khans and Kapoors, There are even fewer Devi Shetty and Naresh Trehan who run their chain of Multi-specialty hospitals spread all over the country.

See what it takes to become a doctor and then give such “Geeta-Gyan”:
a. 5 and half year of MBBS training and 1 more year of Compulsory Rural Internship at Rs. 15000 – 20000 per month. (Any other field eg. Engineering, Management, a person would become Postgraduate in this much time and start earning
double the amount.) If one doesn’t study further, the pay at this step is 22,000 per month.
b. After above 6 and half years of Graduation, 3 more years of Postgraduation, followed again by compulsory rural / Government job for 1 year or pay Rs. 25Lac bond.
If one doesn’t study further, the pay at this step is 40,000 per month.
c. After this above 10 and half years, 3 more years of Superspeciality , followed by 1 year of Govt job or a Bond of Rs. 2 Crore. And the seats are so few with tough competition, there tends to be a gap of a year or two in preparing for various entrance exams.

6. Why only Doctors are being forced to work in rural and government hospitals after their study? Why only we should pay government if we don’t want to do it? The rural/Govt sector needs help of Engineers, Lawyers, Chartered Accountants and MBAs also. Why aren’t the Engineers sent to rural areas to design and monitor roads and industrials development? Why aren’t the Lawyers forced to work as Public
prosecutors before they can join some big foreign corporate firm? Why aren’t the CAs asked to work in CAG office and various other government financial sectors
before joining Multinational Giants? Now government wants that doctors should not
immigrate to other countries without asking them. Why? Are the IIT/IIM students stopped before they flee to foreign countries for big fat salaries? So, why us? What is it that government of society has done for doctors that they should repay? They bloody can’t even protect them from goons whileon duty.

7. You say that doctors are writing unnecessary and costly medications. Do we decide the price of a drug? Do we manufacture or give license to drug manufacturers? Controlling the price of essential drugs is a government job. We are helpless. Sir, its easy to point fingers. We don’t say that all is well. But all is not well anywhere. Its a different thing creating awareness about dowry or female feticide. But its entirely different to comment on such a technical and complicated issue without getting into the details of it. You have maligned the entire medical fraternity. For every 10 doctors who are doing wrong, there are more than 1000 healers. You owe us an apology!!! This issue is not as simple as you think it is! Please show stories which are unbiased and
straight-forwar d. You cannot do justice to such an issue, especially after charging a whooping amount for creating awareness!!! (We hear that Amir has charged 3 crores for episode of satyamevjayate in which he spreads the message to doctors that they should not make money and do social service!!! How sacred!!! I
don’t know if its true, but well, it’s the season of
allegations!)

“We Doctors may be doing little social service( like you do ), But at least we are not charging for it.

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About Tejas

I am a fun-loving person, who lives in the moment. I don't plan too much into the future.... I am a twitterholic , net-o-maniac, gadgetfreak all rolled into one. I blog about anything to everything (or nothing) that interests me.
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4 Responses to Doctor’s Debacle! – My Views

  1. shakilakhtar says:

    You seem to have understood the dilema. There is no doubt that corruption in ugly dimentions has taken root in medicine as well as in other professions, but I am sure many if not most doctors still carry on the tradition of a noble profession.

    • Tejas says:

      Thanks for your valuable input Shakil bhai ( I hope you don’t mind.) I don’t deny the fact Shakil sir. I did say in my post that I agreed primarily with the point that Docs too have the right to earn as much as any other professional. My point was very simple, Some of them do take you for a ride.

      Don’t misunderstand me here sir, I’ve got two very able doctors in my family, viz. a MD Surgeon as well as a GP. I know the amount of hard work they put in everyday and the sacrifices they make. That was primarily why I shared the mail.

      Look forward to more comments from you. BTW loved your blog on poetry. I’m a fan of Mohsin Naqvi, Bashir Badr besides many gujarati Poets too like Barkat Veerani etc.

      • shakilakhtar says:

        I am honoured to be called bhai, especially in Gujarati context. you and me like many others agree on the same points: that it will be wrong to paint the whole profession as evil just because of some (unfortunately substantially many) black sheep. Earning and lots of it is genuine and dr’s right but taking poor people for a ride, taking commisions for tests never needed etc….??

      • Tejas says:

        True Doc. That is the only point I disliked, though sad but its true in many a cases. esp in big hospitals….. I’ve seen a few cases, that will make your hair stand on an end….

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