My (Brief) Take on Doctors and the Medical ProfessionPosted: December 29, 2013
I’m currently following (on Twitter) a doctor who gives study and life advice to pre-med and medical students. His tweets are always full of positivity, and sometimes humour, that I’m sure they are meant to give motivation and provide these young souls the strength to embark on their journeys to become doctors.
After reading and following him for some time, it’s not hard to know that life as a med student IS difficult. The amount of stress they have to endure, the number of things they need to remember, the minimal requirements of passing their courses, the number of hours they put into studying and later houseman-ship.. The expectations from parents, sponsors and society in general.
Having this perspective in mind, I find it sad that some groups in society, especially young and social media hip parents, take doctors and the medical profession for granted. Criticising them for lacking compassion, not caring enough for their kids (if paediatrician) and accusing them for “simply wanting money by injecting chemicals and vaccines or giving antibiotics to their patients”.
True, I’m sure there are some unethical doctors around. I sympathize those who had awful experiences with their doctors, but believe me these bad apples exist in other occupations too – lawyers, businessmen, politicians, contractors, heck, even educators.
But does that give us the right to put all, or most, doctors down? To label them as ” they don’t know everything” and that we are better at certain things just because we spent HOURS and MONTHS reading many, MANY journals on certain issues? These doctors spent YEARS of their lives wallowing in medical knowledge. For everything learned, there are epistemologies to understand, the history and reasoning of why’s, there are ethics and proper procedures to be followed and for Muslims, maqasid shariah to be complied. If I could give an analogy, it’s like when people haven’t any formal training as a professional photographer but claim to be a “photographer” just because they’re good at using Instagram, Camera 360 and the like. Hmm..
I’d like to have faith in humanity. I still do. That is why for every bad apples around (in any job, I might add), I believe there are many more good ones to counteract. So I choose to believe that most doctors are good. They do have their patients best interest at heart. There’s nothing wrong with equipping ourselves with medical and technical knowledge, but we shouldn’t get too cocky and claim that we are better. Especially when we didn’t endure what they did.