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Doctors Digging Deep, Point Blank with Asian Weekly 20th January 2017

27 Jan
Doctors Digging Deep, Point Blank with Asian Weekly 20th January 2017

Doctors Digging Deep

Around last year in September the Dell Medical School at the University of Texas at Austin set a new precedent in the US Medical Schools. The students decided to read their own new version of the “Hippocratic Oath”.

The Hippocratic Oath is over 2000 years old and is from the Greek Hippocrates, considered “the father of medicine”.

However these American students felt it is outdated and decided to make their own values.

The Kenya Association of Physicians use the Hippocratic Oath, which goes as follows:

“ I swear to fulfill, to the best of my ability and judgment, this covenant:

I will respect the hard-won scientific gains of those physicians in whose steps I walk, and gladly share such knowledge as is mine with those who are to follow.

I will apply, for the benefit of the sick, all measures [that] are required, avoiding those twin traps of overtreatment and therapeutic nihilism.

I will remember that there is art to medicine as well as science, and that warmth, sympathy, and understanding may outweigh the surgeon’s knife or the chemist’s drug.

I will not be ashamed to say “I know not,” nor will I fail to call in my colleagues when the skills of another are needed for a patient’s recovery.

I will respect the privacy of my patients, for their problems are not disclosed to me that the world may know. Most especially must I tread with care in matters of life and death. If it is given me to save a life, all thanks. But it may also be within my power to take a life; this awesome responsibility must be faced with great humbleness and awareness of my own frailty. Above all, I must not play at God.

I will remember that I do not treat a fever chart, a cancerous growth, but a sick human being, whose illness may affect the person’s family and economic stability. My responsibility includes these related problems, if I am to care adequately for the sick.

I will prevent disease whenever I can, for prevention is preferable to cure.

I will remember that I remain a member of society, with special obligations to all my fellow human beings, those sound of mind and body as well as the infirm.

If I do not violate this oath, may I enjoy life and art, respected while I live and remembered with affection thereafter. May I always act so as to preserve the finest traditions of my calling and may I long experience the joy of healing those who seek my help.”

I draw your attention to:

I will respect the hard-won scientific gains of those physicians in whose steps I walk, and gladly share such knowledge as is mine with those who are to follow.

In the recent buzz it has been said that we should limit the use of foreign doctors and their facilities into our country or seek medical care worldwide.

To the doctors, I ask, is not sharing knowledge and spreading this newfound care your duty?

To the hospitals, I ask, is not providing the best care and most affordable treatments, your duty?

To the governments, I ask, is not giving the best of quality of life to your citizens, your duty?

When our national hospital’s doctors and nurses are on strike over poor working conditions and ridiculously poor wages, how do you expect a nation’s health to prosper? We need the support of the private practitioners, whether they are local or international.

The best medical care system in the world is considered to be in Cuba where they have no private practitioners and the Government has full responsibility. Thus, you either have one way, or both but be fair.

There is no doubt that just like the Education industry, the hospitality industry is a great income earner and can be easily corrupted through negligence, too much red tape, unaffordable treatments and the list goes on. The hospitals can give themselves international certificates but how committed are they to provide affordable and meaningful care?

Yes price makes a big difference, that is why medical tourism still thrives and foreign doctors keep jetting into the country to sort out complicated cases. In any business to keep your human resources you need to give them attractive packages. The obvious remain remuneration, working benefits but also working conditions and most of all a culture led by the top down will make the difference in loyalty to serve one’s citizens.

Yes we should continue to import and why not export specialists because more minds are better than none. But this only possible if we are willing to improve for the long term and not short change the patients and cash them out. The human value must come above all and this for both the doctor and patient. A doctor, who cannot put his kids through decent schools, will also have to recalculate his commitment to his profession. While he or she may want to be the united states of humanity you can not expect a local born and educated doctor to be paid a useless remuneration, while an expat doctor gets the shine and dine?

It all comes down to culture; if our hospitals want to be the best then they have to be willing to be the best too. Practice a transparent, knowledgeable, affordable, equal pay, equal opportunity playground only then can we create a healthy environment for the patient, the doctor and the industry as a whole.

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Posted by on January 27, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

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