Brutality against doctors in India
According to the Indian Medical Association (IMA), 75 % of doctors in India have faced violence at any point of time in their life, and also 70% of violence was initiated by the patient family. Violence against doctors and other health workers is not acceptable and it’s becoming common, the incidence in India seems to be increasing every hour. Violence in any form and any setting should be condemned. However, acts of violence in hospitals are unpardonable and should be dealt with uttermost care.
Verbal abuse, telephonic threats, blackmailing, cyberbullying, aggressive gestures, intimidation, physical violence (such as punching, slapping, kicking, scratching, biting), and even murder have also been reported.
Why Doctors Are Facing Violence?
Less importance to health care in the budget results in low health care infrastructure.
Not sufficient Doctor-patient relationship.
High out-of-pocket expenses
Lack of health awareness
Scarcity of hospital beds
Requirement for advance payments
Withholding a dead body until final settlement of bills, and many more.
Real examples of this brutality in India
Before the lockdown/pandemic
A 75-year-old man was brought into the emergency room and was immediately attended to by the doctors. Unfortunately, the patient passed away due to sudden cardiac arrest. The deceased’s relatives start attacking the doctor which leads to a grievous injury culminating in the death of the doctor.
On 12th June 2019, Nil Ratan Sircar (NRS) Medical College in Kolkata faces an incident, where two interns received near-fatal injuries at the hands of a 200 strong mob after a 75-year-old patient died. The relatives of the patient put allegation of negligence on the part of the doctors. Of the two doctors, Dr Paribaha Mukherjee sustained severe head injuries. Then the protests were carried by the doctors from Kolkata and end up in national wide protest in which over 8 lakh doctors went on strike.
Therefore, these incidents explain that number of assaults on doctors is not because of this pandemic, such things are taking place over the years.
Training -The doctor is given the training to check the records of the patient such as anxiety, funds need to cure the disease if he /she is the only earner of the family, or having any other psychological disturbance.
Communication and empathy effective doctor and patient communication are good for patient satisfaction to explain different issues about their treatment, such as the treatment modality, likely duration of treatment, costs, complications to face, and prognosis would help immensely to clear their doubts and apprehensions.
Overwork Doctors have to work long shifts, which often results in burnout. Thus, the Demand and Supply gap is found so if we are aware young children opt for doctors as a profession then there will be more number doctors. workload will reduce and also the work will get divided in between them.
The patient stands for long hours in the hospital to get diagnosed by the doctor now to overcome such a situation doctors can book their patient appointment through an online portal thus neither the patient has to wait for the doctor nor the doctor’s find it difficult to operate them.
Security & Safety in the workplace through CCTV, more security guards with day & night shift and also banners display the warning for violence against doctors.
Strict punishment and doing fast-track proceedings in the court of justice.
VIP Culture for politicians should be stopped as many acts of violence on doctors are perpetrated by individuals having strong political connections.
Patients, on the other, should realize that medicine is not magic and a doctor is not God. We need to remember that the fight is against diseases and not against doctors. Therefore, the government has to make strict laws against the ones who are committing such horrific acts to make the general public aware of them.