While the Government Medical College authorities temporarily resolved security issues of Resident doctors in SMHS hospital, voices for introducing medical ethics and aptitude tests in curriculum for aspiring medicos to improve working conditions have gained ground. Resident doctors in SMHS are compelled to boycott their work time and again after hostile situations arise with patients and their emotional attendants. Last week, the doctors resumed their work after four days that crippled patient care in the hospital as one of their colleagues was beaten by some attendants. Though the hospital authorities increased security by manning its gates with policemen and private security and also allowing less attendants inside its wards, yet senior doctors and even administrators says that the situation won’t improve permanently. “The security of doctors will always be a concern even if the hospital is turned into a garrison,” said a senior doctor, who wished not to be named. “What is required is to change the overall condition of the hospital: Enhance its infrastructure, introduce medical ethics for young doctors and paramedics, holding communication training and workshop programmes for doctor,” he told KNS. Medical ethics is a system of moral principles and values that are applied by a practicing doctor while checking up a patient. Dr Nisar-ul- Hassan, who is the president of Doctors Association Kashmir, said that the young doctors need to show sympathy, empathy, kindness and humility toward patients. “Young doctors are fresh from classes, and the hospital authorities post them at sensitive places where such patients are admitted who need critical care. Attendants with these patients are always emotional as their patients are at high risk. For example, casualty and emergency units of our hospitals are manned by these fresh doctors where they have less experience to work. Unless a senior doctor accompanies them, they will have to face insecure situations because they are not mature enough to handle emotional and charged up situations,” Dr Nisar told KNS. He said that introduction of medical ethics and aptitude tests for aspiring doctors have become inevitable in the state given the situation and condition of the hospitals here. Dr Adil Ashraf, president of the young Resident doctors, said that introduction of medical ethics and aptitude tests is welcome, but the government and hospital authorities must improve infrastructure in the hospitals. “Obviously, there should be periodic training of young doctors and paramedics about medical ethics and aptitude. But on the other side, a proper atmosphere is needed for that. Always, we cannot be blamed for our negligence, though we admit sometimes mistakes do happen,” Dr Adil told KNS. He said that the doctors always have to deal with situations where emotions of patients and attendants are involved. “But how can a doctor work if a patient is attended by 20 people. It is very difficult for a young doctor to explain whole prognosis of a patient to 20 attendants. And as a result hostile situations arise,” he said. While these young doctors are not against medical ethics and communication training, yet they demand a comprehensive and long term measures from the government in the hospitals. They said that paramedical staff and nursing orderlies in the hospitals should also work with responsibility. “It needs a multi-dimensional approach. We know increasing security will not end the problem. It is a temporary measure. The hospital authorities must plug other big loopholes in the hospital system, such as improving infrastructure and other facilities needed by the patients and their attendants,” he said. Principal GMC Dr Kaisar Ahmad told KNS that the administration besides increasing security of the hospitals is planning to start communication training programmes for doctors and paramedics to improve doctor-patient relations. He said that bioethics will be one of the focal points of the GMC.
2015 Kashmir Despatch