In the past few months, there has been a constant demand by India’s doctors to the government for the provision of security in order to prevent violence perpetrated by the patient’s family in case any mishap occurs to the patient.
The doctors are appealing to the general public to understand the human limitation and adopt a humane approach towards the doctors. The real question here is “What motivates patients’ family to be violent with the doctor?” Is it the emotional response due to casualty or is it the need to apportion blame to make sense of the disaster that has occurred or is it simply the expectation that the doctor will be successful in saving the patient?
Having a kidney patient in my immediate family has allowed me to get an in depth insight into the conditions that contribute to the violence exhibited by the families of the patients.
The primary reason we think that doctors are to be blamed is because it has permeated into the general thinking of the public that doctors work for money; they adapt malpractices such as performing unnecessary tests, prescribing medicines from certain brands which are costlier or sometimes performing unnecessary operations.
In recent years, the general public has come to believe that in order to extort money from the patient, the hospitals charge exorbitant prices and adopt unfair means. This has led to an erosion in the doctor’s proficiency and distrust amongst the medical community.
The second reason is we think science is infallible. In the modern age, science has become an urgent need, so we can make sense of the world. This assumption is inherently wrong. When scientific experiments are performed especially for medical science, it is impossible to replicate the actual conditions of the world.
Every organism is unique. Whoever created life ensured no two organisms are similar in case of bodily functions. Whether it is medicines, math, behavioural research, technology or physics or chemistry, there is always a 50% chance that a theory can be proved wrong at any point of time, in spite of being proved previously.
This excessive blind faith in science is fanned by humans mostly because we think science has found all the answers. But this is not true. If you ever talk to your doctor, you will find any case can go in any direction, even if it seems small. This is because still don’t know how the body actually works in spite of a vast knowledge about genes.
Doctors are never sure whether medicine prescribed by them will surely work on the patient or not. There is always an inherent doubt. No doctor is sure how anybody will respond to the treatment because each case is different. But, man has been propagating for a long time that science is always correct without communicating the inherent weakness.
For me, even 2+2=4 can be proved wrong. Whether it is math or science, it is developed from the perception of a human which is subject to change. Science came up to look for answers that have a reasonable base. But today, even research, especially in behavioural science, is conducted to prove a point instead of trying to find proper reason.
Whether we accept or not, science is biased towards achieving its own propaganda nowadays. The pharmaceutical companies manipulate systems to prove drugs are effective just to earn profit. These days, corrupt practices have become the norm.
Before making doctors responsible for the condition of the patient, one needs to understand that in spite of tremendous progress of science, major questions related to life cannot be answered, such as death. Doctors try to do their best which needs to be appreciated.
Science is simply a method to find answers to things that exist around us, but it cannot be blanketed as holistic. Nature always ensures that everything has limitations, even if it appears as irrefutable as science. It is time to give doctors their due.