In a unique event on Sunday 23rd July at the Hotel Taj Bengal, organized by Dr. Sarfaraz J Baig, who played the moderator, it was discussed amongst eminent panelists on “how to choose a doctor?”
Indeed, nobody ponders to think about it. The majority of us go by recommendations from our family doctor, relative or friend. This was what was echoed by panelists. Some believed, that a certain amount of research and a doctor-patient connect is essential before initiating treatment.
Mr. Vivek Gupta, MP Rajya Sabha and Editor, Sanmarg, “believed that he would trust the judgment of his physician to rate the competence of the specialist”.
Jimmy Tangree, the producer of Friends FM, “stressed that good communication skills in a doctor were important to him to make his choice”.
Shreya Pande, an actress, said: “she believed in her colleagues more than Google in selecting her doctor”.
Nandita Pal Chaudhuri, a social entrepreneur, “felt that the cost should be reasonable to allow the masses to select a good specialist”.
Shubhra Shah, an author, “underlined the importance of polite and compassionate behavior in a doctor as a pre requisite for selection”.
Mansi Poddar, a psychologist, “believed that doctors are stressed and overworked and that is one of the reasons why they may appear too blunt or even robotic in their approach sometimes”.
Mr. Pradip Tandon, CEO, Belle Vue, “emphasized that for a better outcome, patients should select specialists and super specialists that is now available in most hospitals”.
Alokananda Roy, dancer and philanthropist, “reminded the house that doctors are humans after all. She said that patients should be patient with their doctor and kindness in the society will go a long way in improving doctor-patient relationship and treatment outcome”.
Dr. Sarfaraz J Baig wrapped up the session by explaining that medicine is an inexact science, diseases and treatment are complex more often than not.
He stressed that patient should make an informed choice by doing some research and then take a leap of faith.
He recommended that patient’s s should not fall for advertisements and stories on the social media.
Instead, they should focus on ABCDE.
- A for availability
- B for behavior
- C for competence and core team
- D for degree
- E for expertise
If one needed a specialist, one should check on how available the doctor is, especially if one is treating chronic diseases such as obesity and cancer. In a study from Harvard, it was seen that a doctor’s behavior was more important than his competence when it came to making a doctor’s choice. Competence can be checked by seeing if the doctor has publications or speaks in conferences. Authenticity of degree should be checked in the current age. Expertise or specialization is the new mantra for good outcome.
Dr. Hari Prasad Kanoria, industrialist and philanthropist, summarized that we all need to be practical in our approach to choosing a doctor.