Can I afford my patient ?
It feels so condescending even to, cater to a thought such as this but the fact of the matter is that the thought lies well within the realm of reality and the sooner the medicos understand this the better it would be for them. Gone are the days when a doctor’s aspirations were, to treat the patient on the merits of the case, but today every patient comes with a package, the package with the question of potential affordability, not merely by the patient but more so for the doctor
. The assessment of the net worth of the potential patient becomes a criterion of central importance in patient selection. In case this is getting confusing let me elaborate- Supreme Court of India had awarded a compensation going into few crores in a medical negligence case, taking into consideration the net worth of the life of the deceased which in fact is quite an amusing observation, for the same considerations, apparently, cease to exist in case of similar mishaps resulting from the negligence by government agencies. look at the parallels- the government awards blanket compensation ranging from two to five lakhs to the kin of people dying in train accidents and other such incidents caused due the failure of government machinery without sparing any thought for the net life worth of the people dying, isn’t it ironical`
A piece of advice: next time you take a medical history do not forget to include the questionnaire inquiring about his bank details, fixed assets and other details to assess the worth of his life……just in case