There’s no denying the impact of Satyamev Jayate. Conversations about generic drugs are becoming as common as cricket and Bollywood. The fourth episode on medical malpractice didn’t go down too well with medical community. An umbrella body of 21 medical institutions asked Bollywood star Aamir Khan to apologize for accusing doctors of malpractice in his TV talk show “Satyamev Jayate”. Medscape India said the representation of malpractices supposedly perpetrated by doctors was “rather sad” and Aamir Khan should offer his apologies. Yesterday we asked health.india.com readers whether Aamir Khan needed to apologise for the comments made during the show.
Most of our readers were adamant that the actor did nothing wrong and simply provided factual evidence.
Ruby B felt that all Aamir did was state incidents based on factual evidence and he needn’t apologise to anyone and asking for an apology shows that they are guilty or some wrongdoing. She feels that instead of asking for apologies doctors should look within.
Charanjit Singh felt that it was good that finally someone like Aamir had the guts to finally say the things we all had in our minds. He said that this proved that Aamir wasn’t just a reel hero but a real life one. He was also of the opinion that though this wouldn’t change things overnight it would make an impact in the long run by making people aware.
SM was adamant that most doctors were corrupt and the hospitals were the same everywhere.
Atul felt that only partial truth was being showcased in the episodes. For example the first episode was blaming doctors and courts whereas the government is to blame for not taking action. He felt that in episode 4 dealing with medical malpractice the show only targeted doctors. He felt that due to the country’s education system there were too few government medical colleges which meant that people who didn’t get into them would have to spend almost a crore to get into private ones. This leads to a huge debt which is unfair on docs when compared to other professionals like engineers and lawyers.
Esquire stated that nowhere in the show did Aamir say all doctors were corrupt and the episode did highlight the good work being done by docs.
RK felt that corrupt doctors do exist and many of them are hand-in-glove with pharmaceutical companies.
Dr Tushar however felt that the show depicted docs in a poor light. He agreed that doctors shouldn’t take cuts from pharma companies but felt that they didn’t get their dues financially. He said that the services doctors provide cost money and those expenses had to be recouped. He also felt that a doctor never had time for his family or vacations and it was hard to deal with patients’ expectations. He also added that since doctors are overworked sometimes errors did creep in but that wasn’t really a doctor’s fault.
Replying to Dr Tushar’s comments Aru felt that he was misreading the episode. It was never about charging high fees but about corrupt docs who cheat their patients. Aru also suggested Tushar should have chosen a different profession if he wanted to lead an easier life.
Devashish Tarra replying to Aru’s comments said that one who’s not a doctor can’t understand the trials and tribulations of the profession. He said that if doctors didn’t get enough sleep his work was liable to suffer. A doctor is like every other human being and needs rest. He pointed out that in the UK doctors weren’t allowed to work for more than 40 hours a week and not more than 52 hours including on-call duties whereas in India most doctors worked for over 72 hours a week and were paid a pittance in comparison. He said that people fail to understand how tough it is for a doctor who’s ethical and honest. He said that the good news was that there were scores of young docs who were willing to earn a decent living without cutting corners or indulging in malpractice. He said patients need to realise that doctors aren’t gods.
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