It is day number 37 of the Doctor's (Young Doctor's Association) strike in Punjab province. They demand higher pay from the Government, and more benefits, and have refused to provide any OPD (out patient dept.) or Emergency services in Hospitals through out the province.
Almost 40-50 cases of death due to lack of medical help have been reported so far, (with actual figures much higher especially in rural areas). Other hospital staff, such as nurses and ward-boys have taken over this crucial role without having the skills and education needed.
Today, I saw a man being interviewed on TV talking about the Doctor's strike. With tears in his eyes he explained how he had come from a far-away village to the Emergency dept. of a city hospital, only to be told there was no doctor on duty to help his 2 year old son. After 3 days of desperately asking for some medical care, he had to watch his child die. There are other similar stories.
It seems all the doctors care about are their own demands. But what about their oath, their duty, to help humanity? Or is becoming a doctor only for financial/social respectability reasons? A doctor isn't just another person with a family, he is first and foremost the healer and the helper for those who are sick and needy. Have these doctors forgotten their oath?
I looked around on Google to find the famous Hippocratic Oath, and I found myself looking at another "debate" about whether it should be included in "ceremonies" or not, whether it offends somebody's religious beliefs, whether it is outdated, whether it's this or that or politically incorrect. This makes my heart sink. The essence of the medical profession, and the essence of this Oath, have been lost in this 'modern' socio-political jargon.
So, today, the loss of human life from neglect is worth the financial gain of the striking doctors, just as the loss of the 'helping humanity spirit' is worth the political correctness and social relevance of a document. Such shame!
Here's a version of the Hippocratic Oath that I managed to find online. Maybe these doctors need to re-read what it says: