“AT THE HORIZON OF LIFE AND DEATH”
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This book comprises of stories that capture the pivotal moments in the treatment trajectory of the critical patients facing death. The times that force the doctor to confront the saddest moments, while battling a terrifying, unbeatable foe, the death monster alongside families’ fears, gloom, indecisiveness, dilemmas about future and saviour’s own predicaments intertwined with medico-legal intricacies and consequent complex emotional interactions.
The situations depict ‘the real issues’ through ‘fictional narratives’.
The stories reflect life of a doctor in the present era, amidst sick patients in an imposed legal milieu, a mystic journey, an arcane odyssey punctuated with pain and pleasure in the narrow and uncertain lanes at the horizon of life and death, carrying the burden of various vicissitudes like consumerism, legalities, unpredictable course of diseases, mistrust and blame for poor outcomes.
The narratives try to unmask the eternal latent vulnerability that is intrinsic in doctor’s work, which is exploited by media, law industry and even celebrities to sensationalize and sell their news and shows. The vulnerability turns more evil as the delineating cleft that separates doctors from the invisible overpowering medical industry is not shown, thus ensuring to sustain the prejudice with its dangerous bias towards health care workers.
One negative news story through a ‘portrayal effect’ generates unbridgeable gap in doctor -patient relationship, painful burden of mistrust loaded on doctors, that would heal only if millions of unfettered, unprejudiced, unbiased facts are clearly projected.
The book tries to highlight a seemingly illogical and contrary nature of the conflict; the doctors are finding themselves increasingly being engaged into. The dense mazes of consumerism, extensive communication, documentation, unrealistic expectations, negative media insinuations, legal complexities are demoralizing to doctors and certainly counterproductive for patients.
The futile discords emanate frequently, that are mundane in reality when compared to the actual disease and the real point of intention which is ‘The Treatment of the Patient’.
But is this what the patients actually need? Does the entanglement of doctors in such a maze help the patients in real sense?
The author felt morally compelled and attempted to find answers, embedded in a journey that was wondrous and inspirational, but with horrifying moments as well.
Has the decision to treat human fragility become a mistake in present era? No reward, if you win the match of life and death but sword hanging; if one were to lose?
Patient will need to decide someday, whether to be a consumer or just remain a patient.
Being a consumer may be an overall loss-making deal for the patient.
The stories are fictional, but the depiction of the problems to the doctors, nurses and patients are real, based on day to day routine incidents. The episodes do not pertain to any single particular person, patient, doctor, nurse, hospital and organization. All the characters, names and dialogues in the book are figment of imagination of the author and similarity to any person, any situation or organization may be co-incidental.
The stories are not against any law, word of courts, profession, any government or any organizational set up or rules of any country. They depict the problems commonly faced by doctors in performing their duties hence are likely to affect the patient directly.