ARE PHYSICIANS UNDERAPPRECIATED?

In nothing do men more nearly approach the gods than in giving health to men. ~Cicero

“A doctor is being yelled at for taking too long to get to a patient in the hospital, while trying desperately to save the life of a total stranger, holding his/her bladder, because he or she didn’t have time to pee when the phone rang, starving because he missed his/her meal, tired because the beeper went off just as he/she closed eyes & it’s now 4 in the morning and missing his/her family while taking care of yours.”
– Posted by a physician on her facebook page

In recent times, there has been a prevailing feeling that doctors no longer command the kind of respect they received in yesteryears. One of the reasons for this may have to do with the exorbitant fees they ask for their services. So what could be considered an acceptable remuneration for physicians?

The physician’s right to his or her professional fee is considered a natural right, and every patient has the duty to pay it. Not to pay the Doctor’s bill may be considered stealing in a sense. Also, the right to compensation cannot depend on whether a patient is cured or not. Even if the only effort exerted by a physician is to write a simple prescription, the fact that it took so many years for the doctor to learn his craft is enough reason to be paid justly and adequately.

However, I believe that for every right comes an equal amount of responsibility. There is no reason to provide sloppy and inadequate patient assessment and management just because of substandard pay. It is also unethical to ask for a fee for services that were never rendered.

In the end, respect is always earned and not given on a silver platter. And when a doctor gives himself fully to his profession, the financial gains are simply a small token of appreciation for a job well done. Whether appreciation for a doctor’s service is given or not, as long as one is truly dedicated to the healing art, the only important accolade that is significant is the one that comes from someone Up There.

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