Sunday, February 06, 2005

what do you have to say about this fellows??

AIIMS doctor attempts suicide

From-The Times of India
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/articleshow/1008169.cms

A 37-year-old neurosurgeon at the prestigious AIIMS attempted suicide in his hostel bathroom by slashing his wrists. He was found soon thereafter by his colleagues who rushed him to the hospital's casualty section.
According to doctors attending to the neurosurgeon, his condition is critical. A spokesperson, however, said that his blood pressure became normal after resuscitation.
The doctor in question is a senior resident with the neurosurgery department at the hospital and had joined about seven months back. He has an Army background. He is married and has two children, one of whom is a five-year-old son.
He had reportedly attempted to commit suicide about 6 pm. "He was immediately resuscitated and has now been shifted to the cardiothoracic vascular (CTVS) department," said a doctor at the casualty.
Interestingly, Dr Rachit Gupta, 29, an M Ch student in the same department, had committed suicide on July 16, 2004 by injecting himself with a muscle relaxant. His diaries had revealed that besides a considerable work, he was also feeling "pressured" by senior faculty members.
Following reports of workplace harassment, a four-member internal inquiry committee had been set up to look into the circumstances that led to his suicide. "Not a single hearing has been held by this committee, nor any person from the RDA involved in it," said Dr Amrish Kamboj, president of the Residents' Doctor Association (RDA) here. "We will not take this lying down. We have called a meeting tomorrow and further caution will be taken," said RDA general secretary Dr Dev Kant.
On Tuesday, however, no suicide note was recovered from the victim's room. He was on duty at the neurosurgery department on Tuesday morning and according to doctors at the ward, made the rounds normally. Fellow doctors in the ward said he was usually "very cool". A doctor did point out that "he is not very talkative and made friends selectively. He is very competitive. But this has come as quite a shock to us."
While no one quite knows what the exact reason for this attempt may have been, speculation is rife. "He was from the Army, so he may have been feeling a bit strange here. Also, it all depends upon your seniors -- whether they give you enough surgeries to conduct, if any," said a post-graduate student.

Sumer Sethi says-this is a second incidence in a year that a doctor from the same dept in aiims has attempted suicide..although this is the main issue lets approach this issue more from the core of the problem.. resident doctors have inhuman work hours, most of the resident doctors all over the city dont get a post duty off after a gruelling 24 hr duty.. usual attitude of the management in various hospitals in the city is pathetic.. beyond that the process to become a doctor is very long it takes around 12-15 years for a doctor to complete superspecialization and during the period of residency he is subjected to gruelling work, inhuman work hours and often autocratic behaviour by the seniors.. also the number of residents in any institution is less than the total reqd so most of the resident doctors end up working day in and day out...

any comments???

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

i think it our pleas will only fall on deaf ears. People are not worried about what doctors go thru, and in india it is even more pathetic coz we aren't even paid what is due to us. No wonder many docs opt for plab/usmle. If the pathetic attitude of the authoroties continues these incidents are only the tip of the iceberg so to speak. wake up india!.

PG

Anonymous said...

Suicide is often a very private matter--one never knows what demons we carry and tying it to professional stress may or may not be appropriate--we tend to think of people in the context in which we know them and forget they have many lives (internal and external)--It is a human tradgedy and of that we are sad Frank

Sumer's Radiology Site said...

agreed the cause is always multifactorial but isnt stress at work place an important factor?? is suicide by two people of same dept in a period of six months just a coincidence?

Anonymous said...

Yes, I would want to look at the work site--I run a large community mental health center and emergency psychiatric service operation--I never cease to be amazed at the discrepance between our public and private lives--I discussed this post with our senior psychiatrist (who is Indian). He commented on the high incidence of suicide in India--particulary among non-muslim populations--while visiting India last month he noted that on one day there were seven suicides on the front page of the paper and no editorial comment regarding the number--In speaking with colleagues in India he was also struck by the increased incidence of substance abuse and other ills of rapid economic change--thanks for your posts Frank

Anonymous said...

HI SUMER-as a person with initiative,personally speaking-whether u r a doc or not!don't consider this as a plain comment only.what i say may be not be that easy but it is very much feasible.see i think ITS HIGH TIME(i don't know if it already exists)we all formed a JUNIOR DOCTOR GROUP(with final yr students,housies n junior residents-n also a senior MBBS subgroup of residents alongwith only if u feel its just totally)on the field,mediawise,online n in whatever other imaginable just way possible(AS LONG AS ALL R IN TOUCH).u may think that i'm talking unrelated stuff,but the problem does stem from there.TO-stand as a independent group without political n other bias that u do observe but not "see" directly most of the time on-campus,and express our opinion,in a practical manner,first against such major transgressors standing for reputation n standards alone(in this case AIIMS hiding the internal politics)and then against the minor ones,and for God's sake not the reverse!(so that u end up only forming a public opinion in favour of this jun doc gp of ours.i'm sure it'll be a major success if u adopt the right non-biased attitude as mentioned earlier.instead of aiming at only choosing the right people for the attitude-let's make them right howmuchever possible.U CUD START OFF by putting in some demands like-eg(1)xtra hrs for PG study within work or off-work itself(in a way that all jun docs can/shud attend all classes comfortably n conveniently-one way to do this is record on tape or disc the PG classes n keep it safe with the management's 24hrs-available video library man who does ensure security to the recorded stuff but does pose threat in any form)with facilities to provide the basic essential books there itself without hassle n on demand(or atleast provide a personal room-enough for bag n big books locker if not so).(2)a fully furnished lavish room with AC,clean,mosquito-free or a "cool" feeling environment for the doctor and not what the management alone thinks is cool for the doctor,to endure thru' the hectic/boring 24-hr duty,as the case may be(if they cannot do atleast this for the junior doctor,what humanity do they have-i mean the senior docs n the management silently using the intermed docs,nursing supervisors,PRO's et al middlemen in between to "torture" the jun docs just b'cos they don;t have the age/familiarity with the situation existing at that point of time fully;n also convince the patients at large whether rich/poor,also the jun docs themselves that the whole fault is due to the carelessness/negligence on the part of the jun docs ONLY n not at all the sen docs-in order to lure the jun doce to inhuman duties that benefit only the management n the sen docs only-I THINK U KNOW EXACTLY WHAT I MEAN.actually at each rung of the ladder u do find the same situation-if u think abt it-WHAT U CAN DO-i already gave a few suggestions.LIFE IS UNFAIR as it is-nobody at large understands that in all respects docs too r humans(actually but unfortunately,indians do have to learn to ADOPT THE POSITIVE WESTERN ATTITUDES N NOT THE NEGATIVE ONES.ONE EXAMPLE IS PSYCHIATRY/PSYCHOLOGY which is not all being given its due importance in Indian society AS FAR AS I FEEL.actually,contrary to popular belief,even most of the medical or even major surgical problems can be prevented/cured as well-that's y i sometimes feel the SPM can be potentially more effective in such fields BUT ONLY SO AS MUCH AS THE GOVERNMENT(actually the POLITICIANS let them).I feel that all docs whether junior/senior,temporary/permanent shud also get SEPARATE medical/psychiatric benefits and allowances especially,since they r faced with the most divine of human challenges-dealing with human lives-along with their whole team of people like the nurses,receptionists,telephone operators involved.AND DON'T FORGET THAT THE BASE LEVEL IS THE JUN DOCS N TEA M,N NOT THE SENIORS/MANAGEMENT IN ANY RESPECT---N UNLESS THE BASIS IS RIGHT,THERE IS NO TRUE/LASTING SUCCESS(that's a universal law n nobody can change it-it's all only a matter of patience,moderation n unbiased analysis-nothing is as complicated as it seems if u put ur mind,body,spirit n soul into it).IF I WUD RESTRICT MY COMMENT TO "THAT POOR NEUROSURGEON HAS TO SEE A PSYCHIATRIST",EVERYBODY MOSTLY WUD AGREE BUT WUD NEVER UNDERSTAND THE DEPTH OF THE MATTER,AND THE FACT THAT ITS THE SYSTEM ITSELF THAT HAS TO BE BLAMED N NOT THE MIDDLEMAN/LAYMAN.the people at the top wud let both these classes between themselves by perverting/deprioritising the principles,n sometimes boycott/undo the wise/sensible among them itself(i mean among the sen docs itself there r non-problem makers)in the process,and project a picture that the general "jackass" population will believe n act upon(again a matter of improper analysis by the population-its hypocrisy not democracy that's in India right now.actually a KINGDOM WITH THE PRINCIPLE OF DEMOCRACY wud be much more practically effective in now's impractically democratic India.I TALK TOO MUCH-OR ATLEAST I HAVE THE TENDENCY SO PLEASE BEAR WITH ME IF HAVE GONE OVERBOARD!anothert suggetsion that this jun doc gp cud do is-(3)EXPLORE into ALTERNATE CAREER streams for the large doc population to practically reach the medical principles to all sectors,and not breed them into thinking that specialities r not alone(i'm not denying specialities-they do have their very important specific role-but i don't like the tendency of encouraging the wish to be a cardiologist/neurosurgeon while discouraging the tendency to be an insurance medical officer/medical transcriptionist/hospital administrator.all these fields shud be kept in mind while training the medicos from the start,so they can catch up on what they r good at without waiting to explore them at the and of their MBBS course!THIS SAME PRINCIPLE can apply also to their exposure to other ALTERNATIVE FORMS OF MEDICINE as well in a just,undeviating way(its actually hypocrisy to keep on saying that allopathy/ayurveda/unani forms that have evolved have individually all that is required to heal/cure ALL AILMENTS(the divine part shud never be neglected in any way,of course).AGAIN THIS SAME PRINCIPLE shud be applied by allowing the medicos to be exposed to all specialities from the start of their clinical exposure(which can be very practically done even in the existing set-up if people actually arise to the need of the time,and all/most/usual of the clinical cases shud be individually explained to students IN smaller groups[like,eg,IMA shud not give recognition to any college if within the deadline,eg,5yrs,they cannot do what's needed(rmbr all the 5-yr plans that the founding-fathers of our country put forward-although they exist now still-they r in the primitive form or they lack the spirit they had then.the very essence of these have to be applied to this very problem what we were discussing about docs now)they cannot develop facilities for the BASIS as we discussed earlier-the situation in the industrial sector cud be compared to this---only difference here is-it has already started silently n in small-to-moderate intensity(talkin abt medicos' strikes etc n don't tell me u don't know abt it)--we have to deal with 'HUMAN' machinery which can't be delayed to function for even a second!SORRY IF I PROLONGED IT,but this is only a "briefest of the brief" messages that r very much esstl at this stage tobe initiated,against routine unethical PRACTICES by medicos n non-medicos alike that,in proper analysis,destroy the very purpose of universal healing.

Sumer's Radiology Site said...

dear anonymous friend can u mail me at sumerdoc-at-yahoo-dot-com?

Anonymous said...

Hi. I am a resident from AIIMS. Lets put things in to perspective:37 year old, educated male,slashes his wrists in the bathroom with his wife standing outside and talking to him. The guy apparently wasn' t too keen on ending his life, though he was sending a cry for help. Sucidal intent would be moderate to high. This deliberate act of self harm may have been triggered by harrasment at work. The fact that there has been another suicide attempt in the dept, a successful one, suggests that something is wrong somewhere. The truth is that neurosurgical faculty professors are temperamental idiots who love acting like vily women and mentally and physically abuse residents . This fellow was a bit too sensitive and could not deal with the pressure.

Food for thought: why do doctors have to make their and their colleagues' lives so bad that the joy of living disappears?Its high time a compulsory study of behavioral sciences was introduced at MBBS level.

Sumer's Radiology Site said...

yes i do agree somewhere down the line this senior vs junior doctor has gone wrong.. it shud nt be a senior or a junior...but a senior professional with a junior colleague behaviour..

Dr Saurabh Jauhari said...

I think that all over the world the residents doctors have to go through a very tiring and hectic day to day duties hours. In USA it is a well known that residnets have to work for 80 hrs a week but for other guys ( outside the medical profession) it is only 40 hrs a week so u can easily figure out how much they can demand from a person in medical profession . i am not a resident so far but i am in process of clearing usmle but i will highly encourage all of our medical community to raise a voice aganist the work pressure we have to suffer.

Anonymous said...

Hi Sumer Just digging in the spate of suicides at neu-surg deptt.It seems a lot of peple ( SR JR ) know the root cause but are diplomatic about thr whole thing. .Ihaveheard aboutthe abusive attitude of a senior faculty who has gone east to head a place.is it connected? Its the attitude of your peers that it leads to these spate of tragedies.

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