If you think that Pakistan is a proficient doctor producing hub, you’re probably correct. Every year, the country’s medical institutes produce some of the best medical professionals, who trot around the globe to serve at the best places.
However, not all is fine and dandy with the doctors of Pakistan. Just as every other profession has loopholes, so does medicine. In a recent case at the Shifa International Hospital, Islamabad, a woman was diagnosed with Lymphoma (cancer).
“So this doctor told us my mom had lymphoma 3 months ago, we went through 3 chemos during these 3 months and in those three cycles there were a lot of side effects we had to put up with. They include Face pasly, stroke, a serious infection and pneumonia. The doctor kept telling us this was all temporary and due to chemo and until yesterday when my mom started losing breaths. I told the staff at Shifa International (A-3) that we might need a nebulizer or something. They kept telling me she was doing okay and did not bother providing us with anything that will help her breath. This morning when we took her for ECG the nurse at lab told us she was unstable and immediately provided us an oxygen tank. The staff at lab tried to call our doctor but she didn’t respond and instead said she was out of town and sent another doctor. Then it turns out that my mom never had cancer and the doctor figured it out wrong and now my ami has been on vent and they’re telling us if she survived for 48 hours, they can do anything. This is not a sarkari haspatal I am talking about here. This is Shifa international, we have spent almost 30 lac in these 3 months and this is what we get in return. Careless attitude. three months back when we told doctor to let us consider second option she did not. Instead they scared the shit out of us with stuff like “App dair nahi karen” “Ye cancer hai”. Ghalti se aik american doctor rakh lia shifa waloon ne, Jisko sirf sedhi baat kerni ati hai aur chakar dena nahi atay and he told us He was very straight forward and he said “Cancer tou aya hi nahi MRI mein, CT scan mein, ECHO mein”. How could she even think that she’d get away with this easily. Roz koi lakh dedh ka test likh deti thien. We never said anything. We are not some filthy rich people. Zindagi azab kerke hum ne acha ilaj kerwaya tha. Hamaray sath tou Jo ho gai so ho gai, once my ami is fine IA I am not going to let Shifa International Hospital get away with this easily.”
This case screams volumes about the standard and status quo of hospitals in Pakistan. Zero diligence and responsibility. The doctor, who we have chosen not to name, made a mess and milked the innocent family’s money and emotions. The most tragic part of the whole episode was that when the patient was on ventilator fighting for her life, the doctors said that things might only end up okay if the patient survived next 48 hours.
Unfortunately, the patient couldn’t survive. We hope that the doctor responsible for the financial and emotional burden on the family is held responsible by the hospital and/or other authorities.