By Shyam Sundar Vattam
Two professionals enjoy utmost respect in society. They are doctors and teachers. While one is a saviour of life, the other is a life-maker by imparting knowledge. ‘Vaidyo Narayano Harihi,’ which means that a doctor should be seen as a form of Lord Narayana, is the popular phrase used by people to show respect towards ‘Men in white coat’. But the doctor’s fraternity is very much disturbed over the recent deadly attacks on doctors in some parts of the country over death of COVID patients. On the occasion of National Doctors’ Day, SOM spoke to a few doctors to elicit their opinion on this day.
- How do you like to celebrate this year’s Doctors’ Day amidst COVID-19 pandemic
- What role did you play during the first and the second wave of COVID-19
- Were you not disturbed with incidents of attacks on doctors and nurses during the Corona crisis
- How do you like people to celebrate Doctors’ Day
- What is your message on Doctors’ Day
Dr. Kusuma- Police Hospital, Jalapuri
1) This year, we are not holding any function in view of Corona pandemic. No gathering or function is allowed due to lockdown rules. But we like to make this day a memorable by re-dedicating ourselves to serve the society.
2) Since last one-and-a-half year, I am discharging duty as a counsellor advising people to strictly follow preventive measures like wearing face mask, maintaining social distancing and sanitising hands frequently. Unfortunately, people are not ready to follow the safety guidelines despite appeal by the State and the Union Governments. I always tell people to stay safe at home and step out only if necessary. I don’t know why people cannot sit at home to stop the spread of the contagion.
3) I do not know why some people are ungrateful to us despite serving them. Firstly, people must understand that doctors are humans too and don’t have a magical wand to cure patients. We can serve better if hospitals are well-equipped. If you assault one doctor, thousands of others, who wish to become doctors, will change their decision. It is a big loss to society and not to individuals. It is sad to see our fellow doctors being beaten black and blue by the mob for no fault of theirs.
4) Respect us. This is the biggest gift that the people can give us. We have taken the Hippocratic Oath so we are silently serving the society. But our silence must not be considered as weakness. Unfortunately, you don’t question whom you voted but you abuse us.
5) I want everyone to give us respect that we deserve in society. This is the biggest gift that they can give to doctors.
Dr. J.N. Divakar – Chikkanandi Primary Health Centre, H.D. Kote Taluk
1) I am fully tied up this year and didn’t have time to think about Doctors’ Day celebration. Every year, our Association holds function on this day. But this year, it is not organised due to COVID-19 pandemic.
2) Problems were not faced in the first wave of COVID-19 pandemic. But the biggest challenge in the current second wave was vaccinating people. Taluk people are not ready to take the vaccine despite explaining them about its benefits. I am working in COVID Care Centre and also taking care of Corona positive patients. It has become common to hear abuses from the general public when they were insisted to take the jab. Sometimes, I used to feel why people must be compelled to take vaccination if they are not interested. But suddenly, I remembered about the responsibility on us.
3) I feel bad if doctors are assaulted anywhere in the country. Such incidents have taken place in hospitals where deaths of Corona patients have occurred. People’s support is also important to improve healthcare in our country. The assault on doctors will de-motivate us. At any cost, don’t take law into your hands.
4) I don’t blame the entire society for the incidents of assaults on doctors as only one or two percent of people do this. Before lifting your hand, please remember the doctors who have helped you during emergency.
5) All the best to one and all. Stay at home and be safe. Don’t go out without safety measures.
Dr. B.Y. Srinivas – Urban Primary Health Centre, Saraswathipuram
1) I would have liked to celebrate this day by vaccinating people against the pandemic. But, what to do…vaccine is in short supply. Every year, we were celebrating this day by holding special health camp for people. Due to lockdown, we are not holding any public function. We may celebrate this once the situation improves.
2) I had worked during the first wave of COVID-19 and working in the current second wave of pandemic too. I had worked in COVID Care Centres. During the first wave, I was posted at the Railway Station where over 3,000 people arriving in Mysuru were tested. Our team used to spend 6-8 hours in each train to hold RT-PCR test for passengers. Subsequently, I was posted to Mandakalli CCC. At our UPHC, we were conducting RT-PCR tests and vaccination drive. But due to opposition from local populace, testing was stopped and vaccination was continued. We have vaccinated over 13,000 people in the last seven months.
3) We too deserve respect in society. As doctors, we always aim to save life of any person. We are not gods and gifted with super powers to save all. It is painful to see our fraternity being targeted by mob across the country.
4) Instead of celebrating, let them treat us as part and parcel of society.
5) Let us all join hands together and fight against the pandemic.
Dr. K.P. Dharmesh – Naganahalli Primary Health Centre, Mysuru Taluk
1) For us, everyday is a Doctors’ Day as we will always think of treating poor and needy patients. There will be no celebrations this year due to COVID-19 pandemic.
2) I worked without taking holiday when the pandemic was at its peak. In the process, I had tested positive and spent 10 days in home isolation. Even while undergoing the mandatory home isolation, I was thinking about patients. Luckily, vaccine has been invented within one year after the outbreak of pandemic but still hesitancy is dogging people. In the current situation, vaccine is the only available weapon to fight against the pandemic.
3) I didn’t know why the mob attacks doctors when more than 95 percent of Corona positive patients have recovered. Fortunately, the mortality rate has been very low. People bring patients in critical condition and expect doctors to do miracle. If something goes wrong, the men in white are beaten up. Is it doctors’ mistake if patients are brought to hospitals at the last moment?
4) I want people to celebrate this day by giving respect to doctors. Greet your family physician or doctor-friends.
5) Stay safe at home. Consult doctors in case of any COVID symptoms and take treatment.