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Maimed Conscience and Maimed Beggars (Medical Ethics in India) – Part

council. What George Bernard Shaw said in 1913 may still be true in medical profession - ’No doctor dare accuse another of malpractice. He is not sure enough of his own opinion to ruin another man by it. He knows that if such conduct were tolerated in his profession no doctor's livelihood or reputation would be worth a year's purchase. I do not blame him: I should do the same myself. But the effect of this state of things is to make the medical profession a conspiracy to hide its own shortcomings.’

The current case has brought the issue of medical ethics in India in a glaring focus that doctors cannot hide from. What is likely to happen over the next few days is but predictable. Surely heated debates will take place on the media on the issue of erosion of ethics in the medical community. The health ministry and the Councils are likely to set up inquiry commissions to investigate this and similar cases. A few licenses of doctors may also be revoked; however the roots of commerce and corruption in the Indian Healthcare system are too deep rooted. The well knit system allows doctors to get kick-backs for referring the patient to a specialist or a diagnostic centres or surgeries. Even bigger tragedy that haunts this noble profession is that often these investigations and surgeries are unnecessary. All this will never truly come to light and cannot be eradicated.

The threats we face today in our society is not so much external but internal and there seems to be no long term solution or the will to fight this threat with any effectiveness. In any case in this nauseating instance of maiming of healthy adults and sometimes of the innocent children; demands a sentence that cannot be mere revoking of medical license to practice but should be as severely punitive as possible perhaps even hanging of the accused.

The next time we look at a blind or a crawling beggar asking for alms, we will wonder if this was naturally fated or artifici
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