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Friday, November 27, 2009

Doctor Libel?

First of all many many thanks to my fellow writer (author of What is an insight) and best buddy for the title(needed help with actual usage of the word libel, didn't want to get sued...pun intended).

Over the past week it has been brought to my notice by more than one source (thankfully readers of my blog) that I may be writing too openly about something that till now at least in India has been considered taboo. What goes on in a hospital, inside the ot should stay in the ot. What happens between doctor and patient must remain confidential. While I agree with confidentiality, I must impress that what I am writing in no way implies one person or the other. At the same time, while people close to me may know who I am talking about, for the general people who have access to this blog, they have no clue.

With the issue of whats going on in the hospital staying in, I must reiterate that this blog started off with the Municipal Hospitals and the standards in them with the hope of showing the general population the problems in there. While I moved on to better (private) hospitals, the problems continued albeit not as bad. This is why the blog continues to date. I think its not fair to not write about the bad things involved in medicine and only write about the good (even miraculous) cases and situations as that would give a wrong impression. One such impression already exists wherein Doctors are treated like pseudogods. There is no such person on earth. Doctors are just humans, not superintelligent, not supremely skillful, not even close to perfect. The fact remains that we are just a hard working group of people with the knowledge to heal and cure maybe 40% of the problems that can affect people.

If we as Doctor's don't learn to talk about our mistakes and shortcomings, be it at the hospital, in private practice or even in our heads, we will never reach the level at which we can truly say that we can help people.

The other thing that most doctor's seem to be afraid of is the malpractice law. My answer to that is that if you've done nothing wrong, you've got nothing to fear. If you have done something wrong, admitting it is the best thing you can do for the patient simply because that patient will have even more faith in you that he/she did before the mistake. So, what exactly are we afraid of?

At this time, what I ask of you, my readers (faithful or not) is to let me know whether I should keep writing about my experiences as they come or should I sugar coat them and write only about the victories and brush the controversies below the rug.

If you've never commented on the blog, this is the one time I really ask you to do so. Take the effort and let me know how you feel.

2 comments:

  1. I must admit that I thought some of the blogs posted where rather revealing. In the reality of the world we live in today, you never know who may decide to use the info you have posted against someone else. I agree that mistakes should never be hidden; it's the issue of the patient's confidentiality that worries me. If the blogs can be connected to actual patients and doctors, then there may be a problem. A way out of this may be to limit your blogs to a very closed group of only professionals.

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  2. Okuns My dear dear friend. Thank you once again for sound and good advice. I will take heed and modify the way I write about certain things. Cheers.

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