Doctors are just as offshoots of a tree called as society. They essentially are the same as rest of the society. It is a specialized branch of tree which helps other offshoots of tree to save others. As part of same tree, they resemble the parent society, of which they are part. Society needs to choose and nurture a force of doctors carefully with an aim to combat for safety of its own people.
Since it is a difficult path to be a good doctor, there has to be some reason why someone will choose to be a doctor. The path will require sacrificing golden years of his life in studies and working hard for the benefit of others thereafter.
Our society fails to develops a robust system of choosing and nurturing good doctors and therefore itself responsible for decline in standards of medical profession.
- Exorbitantly expensive medical education and lowered merit: aspiring doctors are now forced to pay exorbitant fee, in millions. Many go under heavy debt to pay medical colleges fee. Children with lower ranks in merit pay millions and can become doctors. The real problem here is that real deserving will be left out.
Medical students from the very onset are victim and witness to these practices and exploitation. They see their parents pay this unreasonable fee through their noses or take loans. Such blatant injustice will have an everlasting effect on the young impressionable minds. Society gives them lessons of corruption and exploitation.
- Discouragement of medical fraternity: The adage “To err is human” probably does not apply to the doctors anymore. Hence they are harassed often for any adverse clinical outcome even though it may be because of poor prognosis of patient. They work under continuous fear and stress and are punished and assaulted for each small or big error. Society has failed to support them in their difficult times. Best and talented may try to shun away from the profession.
- Industry earns, but blames doctor: Till now, doctor patient interaction was the central point of the health industry, a core around which medical industry revolved. But now this interaction, treatment and almost everything is controlled by industry. By provoking controversy about doctors for varied reasons, medical industry and law has positioned themselves between the doctor and patient and taken a center stage in health care. Every one associated with industry like medical education, pharmaceutical, suppliers, insurance, administrators, managers, equipment industry, insurance earn from the medical sector, but remain invisible. Blame for all the cost and sufferings is conveniently put on the doctor hence causing diminution of respect. Loss of respect for the profession is a bad advertisement for good talent to the profession.
- Overzealous regulation of medical profession: because of falling standards, every one is feels a need for stricter punishing regulation of medical profession. Time and resources which should have been utilized for treatment of patients, has to be used for complex documentation, frivolous medical lawsuits and communication. It is not uncommon to use doctors as scapegoats to save the weak health system causing further oppression of medical profession.
- Exploitation by law industry: Even in few advanced countries, one can see instigating advertisement of lawyers on zero percent fee. While doctor is paid miniscule amount of money by patients, he will be sued for millions. And lawyers change in lakhs. Money earned by medical lawsuit is divided between client (so called patient) and lawyer. Doctor will definitely divert their energies to save themselves from such practices rather than focusing on treatment of patient. In an era, where brothers and sisters fight for money, doctors are easiest target to extract money.
- Defining the patient as consumer has created fear in mind of doctors and deterioration of doctor patient relationship.
- Wrong projections by media: Painful retrospective analysis of work of doctor by media, courts and public continue. One stray incidence of even alleged or perceived negligence is projected as generalization. Whole profession is painted in poor light. Whole community looses respect because of irresponsible behavior of some people in media to earn quick money and fame. Ultimately it will help everyone except doctor and patient and discourage the excellence in medical care.
- Doctor’s assault: the inability and lack of support of society to prevent assault against their savior will hit the enthusiasm of doctors towards patients. It will propagate children’s unwillingness to enter the profession amidst chaotic conditions.
Apple tree will have apples and musk melons plant will grow muskmelons only. One should not expect apples to grow on muskmelon stem. If society has failed to demand for a good and robust system, failed to save them, it should not rue scarcity of good doctors. Merit based cheap good medical education system is the need of the society. This is in interest of society to nurture good doctors for its own safety.
Therefore the quality of doctors who survive and flourish in such system will be a natural consequence of how society chooses and nurtures the best for themselves.