//Making of doc: Mission gone awry

Making of doc: Mission gone awry

Mumbai: While most of the doctors start their career with noble intentions, most end up putting practical considerations first. CNN-IBN tries to find out the reasons behind this turnaround.In a classroom at Mumbai’s KEM Hospital, 180 students – all aspiring doctors – listen with rapt attention to a lecture on internal medicine.

Internal medicine is just one of the 15 subjects apart from practicals and the punishing study routines that medical students go through. And it takes more than sheer determination to make them do it.

Says Abbas Rupawala, a third-year MBBS student of KEM Hospital, Mumbai: "To tell you frankly, I was attending a round with one of the surgeons, Dr Dalvi, and one of the patients walked up to him and said, ‘doctor you have operated on me 12 years back and I am just fine today’. That just shook me and this is why I’m here, you know."Of the 5,500 students who take the medical exams in Maharashtra every year, about 3,300 make the grade. While many start with noble intentions, most end up putting practical considerations first.The faith of students like Abbas is not shaken by all the recent incidents of attacks by angry patients. They still believe their profession is noble and say the solution is in better communication. But Shreekant Vasudevan, a fifth year MBBS student, does not think so. "The profession may or may not have changed, but my perception has changed altogether," he admits. "I initially thought it was a very noble profession, which I still do. I wish the profession was more humane and had a more humanitarian approach towards patients." It’s no secret that it costs a pretty penny to become a doctor. So it’s not surprising that many students choose to go abroad or start practising in big cities to recover their huge investments. But in this group, for now at least, there are some who plan to go where it matters most.

But the mission is still in his mind for Tejas Bhopatkar, another fifth year MBBS student."I have seen rural India. People out there really need medical care and the care available in the cities is certainly not available there," he avers.Students like Tejas, Shreekant and their batchmates will go on and become doctors. But, on the way, they forget their Hippocratic oath they have taken as practical considerations take precedence over the mantra of mission. (http://www.ibnlive.com/article.php?id=5249&section_id=3)