Are we the problem?
As a part of Instagram’s Tuesday Trivia activity, we posted this image and audio recording (Thank you Taranjot Kaur) and requested followers to share their insights.
What feelings does this image generate in you? What is the author trying to say? How does this relate to healthcare communication in India?
It is related to healthcare in a lot of ways according to me , the first one being the money minded attitude of doctors (as we all have heard people saying doctors have a great business , they have access to unlimited money for their lifetime).This is really harmful for the people as well as us , as people will lose trust which is the basis of a healthy patient-doctor relationship and when we can't have a good rapport with our patients we cannot serve them with the best treatment.
Secondly, lack of time, doctors are so busy that they do not have time to sit patiently with their patients and listen to what they want to say. If we can’t give enough time and listen to our patients how can we know their problems well. This can lead to wrong diagnosis and hence the wrong treatment.
Third is being biased and ignoring the needs of those who cannot afford the treatment or do not have access to good medical facilities. We are forgetting that before being a doctor it’s important to be a good human. We all take oath to treat everybody equally but forget to apply it during our practice.
Fourth being unfair towards the patient by telling them the most expensive treatment even if they can be treated better with other better options which might be cheaper (for e.g.: suggesting a surgery when the patient can be treated by taking medicines only).
The Author, being an excellent teacher who lifts everyone’s mind by depicting pictorially how nasty is this today’s generation.
Exponential productivity might extend to such a level where there will be no more space for the real loving mother Earth. The disaster event suffocates the human spirit and now covid-19 pandemic created a void in everyone’s life.
The magic that lives at the essence of life has gone due to our intensity of cruelness increasing day by day. The only enemy is among us who attacked, abused and mistreated the world.
The inner voice of that poor security guard with a broom in that picture might be like we’re not supposed to be here’.
Believe me or not, most of our problems root from within. So, if we need solutions, we need to look for it within ourselves rather than outside. The picture here depicts the result of generations of ignorant homo-sapiens, who have tainted a beautiful and healthy space. The words “we have met the enemy, and he is us” emphasizes the same. But if we keenly observe the animated character, we can see that he is disappointed and worried of the future.
However, he decides to make remedies to better the future. Now, drawing analogies, clinical communication skill is a long-forgotten core skill in India. The root cause for this being ignorance. This has put several patients in distressful situations, often increasing their burden and pain. So, it is time that we stand-up for what is needed. It’s time to put in efforts to better our clinical communication skills. And how do we do that? We do that by acknowledging its importance.
Who is responsible for deterioration in healthcare situation? System? People? Health care professionals? Who is the enemy?
It’s easy to complain and blame outside situations and people. But to be aware of one’s own flaws requires courage and self-awareness. Like in this picture there is so much garbage all around the beautiful fruit trees. Instead of focusing on who did it, how bad it is and giving a long list of excuses of what we can’t do about it if we focus on what we can do then it will be all clean and beautiful. It may seem to be an insurmountable task at first but once we take charge of our self and act responsibly then it will be all easy and wonderful!
To me this picture depicts
ONLY WE ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR OUR ACTIONS
Forest is full of things that doesn’t belong there, nature (a magical place) becomes a dumpster and it’s all because of us. We are the enemy of nature.
As in healthcare communication in India nobody gives attention to communication that’s why patients are not satisfied.
The author is trying to convey that the Earth was beautiful before but we as humans have been unable to take care of it, spreading garbage everywhere leading to our current plight.. Similarly, in healthcare, it was a noble profession where patients used to consider Drs equivalent to God, as they were the ones standing between life and death, but due to many factors such as money, privatisation, industrialization of healthcare, greed among healthcare workers, lack of morals and the lack of spirit to be devoted and serve has led to malingering of this noble profession which has led to incidences of violence, abuse of Drs, no job satisfaction, suicide, etc.
The cover is depicting a well-blossomed orchard and nature is shown to be productive. But the surroundings are full of waste that has been there due to the activities of mankind. Thus, the artist wants to convey, the nature is productive, but it won’t be for long if we do not respect it and take care of it, and hence we are the enemy. Similarly, in any situation, be it our profession, our personal life etc. we often are our own enemy, who makes the things/situation worse by our behaviour and disrespect that we show. (Taking it in respect to communication and Healthcare professional, disrespecting our patients by not valuing their concerns and not giving them time to talk to us, is the reason they distrust us. So, we have now found our enemy and it’s us.)
We have spread the filth of miscommunication in the field of medicine and it has severely obliterated the clarity of consultations. Both the non-cooperating doctors and patients together have contributed in building a system which needs a thorough cleansing. When we start to look deeper into the problems, the task seems daunting but honestly who led us here?? Only us. Thereby, we are our own enemies. And if we work together, this dirt can be easily cleaned, and everyone can flourish.
While learning, the obstruction is mostly created by us. And hence only we can overcome them. Taking a step back and assessing and analysing is like taking run up for a big jump, it is one of the ways we learn and grow.
Humans tend to yield healing powers coupled with recklessness when things are rosy. So, when our journey resumes downhill instead of progressing ahead we lament over the destruction we left behind. I believe that instead, a good action plan is to think about the consequences of ripples left behind as a by-product of our actions and see if they fit perfectly in our visions for the future. If not, we need to change right now so that we don’t leave future generations responsible for our shortcomings.
“We’ve made the enemy and it is us.”
The quote along with the pictorial representation shows how we as humans ourselves have become our enemies by creating pollution in various forms. In a healthcare scenario, I would like to attribute this, to the fact that we, the proud health care professionals are somewhere lost in the transit of knowledge and the battle between against time and empathy and this made an enemy out of ourselves,