The recent suicide by Dr. Anoop Krishna, a 35 years old orthopedic surgeon from Kerala brings to fore some very pertinent issues. It takes decades of hard work to achieve a medical degree and many more decades to earn a reputation and goodwill in the […]
As doctors we confront disease and death on a daily basis. People think that we get used to death and loss over time. Unfortunately that is not true. Although we are advised from the beginning to cultivate detachment, it is not as easy as it sounds. Showing emotions is considered to be a sign of weakness, but most of us fail miserably when it comes to detaching our personal lives from professional life. There are many sleepless nights and some cases stay in our hearts forever. For years, we think about what we could have done differently to change the outcome. However, grief is not a luxury that we are granted as many more lives await our care and we have no other choice but to get back to work the next morning.
In reality, deep down most of us continue to mourn the losses much more than we can ever celebrate the daily victories. Eventually, this leads to emotional exhaustion and physician burn out. We need to break the professional taboo around expressing this unacknowledged grief. While we provide support groups for so many health issues, we also need to develop groups to support doctors and healthcare workers to help them overcome their daily stress and grief.
At the last count, 573 doctors in India have lost their lives during #Covid19 pandemic. Doctors groups on social media carry new #obituaries everyday. And yet, the medical community continues to fight the battle not only against Covid 19 but also against the hundreds of […]
Obesity and Metabolic Surgery Society of India (OSSI) Recommendations for Bariatric and Metabolic Surgery Practice During the COVID-19 Pandemic
Very proud to be a part of this committee of experienced bariatric surgeons in India to help in formulating these important guidelines for resumption of #bariatricsurgery during the ongoing COVID 19 pandemic. #Obesity has emerged as one of the most serious risk factors affecting the […]
Just as the lockdown opened up, my husband and I resumed our daily morning walks. On one Sunday morning, we were just about a hundred meters from our complex and two bikers came in and snatched the chain from my neck. Before we could react they fled. Later we were told that rising unemployment and misery during the lockdown has led to an increase in the crime rates. Everyone said, it’s not safe anywhere, anymore. We need to be cautious and we must not trust anyone.
After a few days, while I was on the way to the hospital, my car broke down on the highway. Though the lockdown had lifted, there were hardly any people on the road. Those days and even now, it’s a night mare to get hold of a taxi. Patients were waiting for me at the hospital and there were continuos calls to ask when would I reach. There was no way a mechanic could reach us before an hour. As the driver tried to fix the car, I stood out hoping and praying that somehow we could get a mechanic soon. After a few minutes an uber taxi driver stopped of his own accord. He came over to help us and pushed the car as we tried to jump start it. It was deserted with just the three of us on the highway and I was already getting uncomfortable. Eventually, much to my chagrin, i had no choice, but to request the cab driver to drop me to the hospital. In my mind, I thought that considering my desperation he would definitely try to fleece me and charge a lot more. I was totally convinced that it was for this reason he had stopped to help us in the first place. Also, cabbies were hardly getting any rides those days and this would be an easy way to make an extra buck. These are desperate times. Well, as long as I could get to the hospital at the earliest and start seeing patients, I didn’t mind paying more. Throughout the journey I was very cautious as those days there were hardly any people on the road and I didnt want to have another horrible experience. I kept my phone close to me, just in case…..
Finally we reached the hospital and asked him how much did I need to pay. I was totally taken aback when he refused to take any money. He said that he just wanted to help me and also especially because I was a doctor. I felt exposed as though he had read my suspicious thoughts during the ride, but I was also pleasantly surprised. It rekindled a faith that I seemed to be losing.
These are difficult times. Desperation is in the air. Crime rate is rising and I experienced it first hand, however it is heartening to see that there are many people who are going beyond themselves to help others. It is easier to help when God blesses us with plenty, but much harder to help and be considerate when there is nothing in your own house. That taxi driver taught me to keep the faith in humanity.
……Because to stay alive we need to believe and we need to have faith. Life is a mix of good and bad. We cannot avoid either, but it’s for us to choose whether we want to see a glass that is half full or half empty.
“Action, heroism, certainty and optimism”, are some of the key tenets of surgical culture all across the world. However, in today’s times surgeons have been compelled to cope up with, “inaction, fearfulness, uncertainty and some degree of pessimism”. To say that COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted […]
They were everywhere and yet they were nowhere,
They were invisible and yet their presence was felt most profoundly,
They created the skyscrapers and yet had no roof on their heads,
They took care of our kids while theirs cried of hunger,
They walked for thousands of miles, while we took months to arrange for a few trains,
They were the nowhere people… and all they ever wanted was, to go home to be loved and feel safe just like all of us.
©️Dr. Aparna Govil Bhasker