Saturday, 21 January 2017

“Koi Dekh to Nahi Raha”: Doctors are brand ambassadors of health

“Koi Dekh to Nahi Raha”: Doctors are brand ambassadors of health

Dr KK Aggarwal

National President Indian Medical Association
Doctors in India have been equated to God since ancient times. This has continued even today even after modern medicine has taken over. No other profession perhaps enjoys the same exalted status as that of the medical doctors. A common man usually perceives God as a force for whom nothing is impossible, as the one who is the final decision maker, whose decisions cannot be challenged, who can provide instant relief and who overcomes miseries. He can also answer the unknown as He is omniscient i.e. all-knowing. A doctor is a healer and helps the patient overcomes his problems, and at times, saves the life of a patient. Most of us have faith in God and trust that He will do right by us. Similarly, during illness or during any acute emergency, patients and/or their families repose the same faith and trust in their doctor. Doctors are different, they are role models and icons. They are expected to act in a manner befitting their position in the society. Regulation 1.1.1 of the MCI Code of Ethics also requires a physician to “uphold the dignity and honour of his profession”. Doctors look after the health of not only their patients, but also that of the community and are therefore regarded as “Brand Ambassadors of Health”. This public role puts a responsibility on all of us to practice what we teach our patients about healthy habits and lifestyle. And also maintain our dignity and integrity before the patients. For example, if they see you drinking even if it is social or indulging in any other ‘questionable’ personal action, this would make them suspicious of your integrity or regard it as hypocrisy. This moral code of ethics therefore must be respected at all times. Despite a public role, doctors deserve a personal time, which should be off-limits for patients. The two should not mix. Therefore whenever you are in your private life see “ Koi dekh to nahi rha”

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