27 September, 2020

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No Treatment – GMOA’s New Year Greeting To Patients

By Ranga Kalansooriya

Dr Ranga Kalansooriya

Dr Ranga Kalansooriya

No treatment will be the New Year greetings of medical doctors to their poor patients, as per the announcement by the Government Medical Officers’ Association (GMOA) last week. They will take stern trade union action if the government continues its silence over the demands of the medical practitioners, as per the GMOA claim.

What are these demands? Better medical standards for their patients? Provide sufficient medicine to the dying patients at Maharagama and Karapitiya Cancer hospitals? Provide better medicine for the critical patients by removing sub-standard medicine from the stores? Take strict action against the private hospital mafia? Introduce better standards to the mushrooming private hospitals? Investigate the alleged illicit human organ trading rackets that some private hospitals are engaged in? Divulge and take tough action by the Bribery Commission against the corrupt practices of the doctors in order to safe guard the good name of the profession?

Sorry – nothing of that sort. Pension issues, withdrawal of the vehicle permit, SAITM Private Medical College and CEPA agreement between Sri Lanka and India.

On the outset, there exist a major political rift between GMOA and the government over the conduct of the former during the January 8 Presidential Election. Many are of the view that the GMOA became a political tool of the Rajapaksa regime due to the conduct of some of its key leaders. If this is the case, GMOA should clear its name and fame before getting on to the streets for struggles, otherwise it cannot avoid the political branding that the professional entity would receive from different quarters of society. In fact some medical officers feel that the association is divided based on individuals who became political activists rather professionals. Professional bodies should not get politically tarnished at whatever cost, and should get stringent measures to get rid of such politically aligned characters. Otherwise the struggles will continue and the poor patients will suffer.

Withdrawal of an existing privilege would certainly create problems. I fully, thus, understand the lamenting of the doctors. Vehicle permits issue not only confines to the medical doctors, but it affects all state sector executives as well. But my argument is that it should not be limited to the state sector executives – what about the tax paying corporate sector that virtually runs the economy of the country? They too deserve similar privileges. In that case what about the teachers? Both general medical practitioners and professions like teachers would go through more or less a similar academic process –basic degree and a process of professional training. Special professions like medicine are predominantly based on the personal choice made at the entry level of Advance Level.

No argument, professions like medicine become more sacred due to its compassion towards humanity – specifically on saving lives. So does occupations like teaching which is more onto building lives. It is difficult to judge as to how one could over run the other. Former Indian President Abdul Kalam categorized primary teacher as the most important profession as it involves in shaping and building the future of the kid. If that is the case professional bodies like GMOA should fight for social justice – for the betterment of such persons.

However, the government too made a mess out of the issue by re-granting the facility for Parliamentarians which should not have been done.

The Medical Faculty of the South Asian Institute for Technology and Medicine (SAITM) – or the Private Medical College (PMC) in Malabe is another mess. It seems the GMOA is not opposing the concept of PMCs but the poor standards of the SAITM Medical Faculty. The Sri Lanka Medical Council (SLMC) at several occasions has raised its concern over several issues at Malabe PMC, predominantly on its clinical practices. Community medicine and forensic medicine have also been issues. Granting clinical practices at state hospitals (at Avissawella and Kaduwela hospitals as informed to the courts) is also morally wrong when there are ample private hospitals in the country. Some alleged that even the in-take of students is not up to that standards. “It seems there students who have not qualified in bio science at their Advanced Levels but home science,” a GMOA member told this writer. If these allegations are true, the institution requires a thorough scrutiny to rectify the situation. The government should be serious about getting the situation corrected.

The attitude towards the Kotalawala Defence University (KDU) that also runs as a semi government institution is entirely different. “Our standards are not the best, but comparatively OK. There are issues as well, but strange enough GMOA is silent about it,” said a senior lecturer of medical faculty of KDU.

But the ‘disaster’ situation is not at PMC or KDU, but at Rajarata and Eastern University Medical Faculties. “They do not even have proper dedicated teaching staff, either the lecturers are tool old retired professors from Colombo or elsewhere on part time basis or those who are on sabbatical leave from other universities. So the output is hopeless, and I cannot claim that they are professional doctors,” according to a senior Professor of the Colombo Medical Faculty. Another Professor said that the Rajarata and Eastern Medical Faculties consist of ‘just passed out MBBS students from Colombo or Jayawardenepura who has no teaching or clinical experience.’ Strangely the SLMC provides the excellence recognition to these graduates and GMOA turn a blind eye on these state institutions. “In fact all the state run seven medical faculties have major issues. Colombo has more than 30 crucial vacancies. Nobody talks about it, but a big issue is on PMC,” he said.

If this is the situation of the state medical faculties, the demand of the GMOA to make PMC the eighth medical faculty of the state does not make sense. I think the GMOA should revisit its demand list and get its acts together, get the house in order before making a mess out of the situation.

I have no idea as to why GMOA is making a demand on the controversial CEPA agreement. Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe made a clear statement in Parliament vehemently rejecting any move by the government to bring CEPA into force. But the doctors who state that the agreement will continue, feel threatened that their ‘private practice’ will be affected by visiting Indian doctors under the agreement. Nonetheless, there are dozens of Indian doctors practicing in private hospitals in Sri Lanka for the past many years even without CEPA. Why is this sudden fear?

No profession has supremacy over the others. And no profession could claim that they are supreme output of free education. What is the objective of free education? To produce doctors, engineers and such professionals at the expense of poor tax payers of this country? Sorry, sadly mistaken. The expectation of free education is to produce learned citizenry and good human beings – and if one claims to have gained the highest benefits of free education, he or she should be mindful of humanity, fair play and compassion. It is not, at all, about gaining the highest marks at examinations by ‘parrot-like’ cramming.

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Latest comments

  • 21
    33

    The only solution I see is for the masses to organize themselves as mobs armed with iron rods and poles and hunt them doctors down from wherever they are and beat them up red, black and blue… And once they are admitted to hospitals, I am sure their colleagues will tend to them…
    :)

    • 5
      15

      Muhammed Fazi, Why don’t you start it ? Then others will follow you. First attack muslim doctors because they are the rogues in the profession.

    • 11
      12

      I was about to confront padeniya when I saw him at the SJGH. But the moment I said ‘Ado’ he ran away and made a quick exit. They are good at talking big knowing that citizen’s cannot confront them when they hold press breifings. TV cameras are dumb mutes. Muhammed Fazl you re very correct.

    • 9
      7

      @Fazi:Ane [Edited out], Do you think Sri Lanka is a country with a sharia law, where problems are solved with barbaric ways such as beating, hunting down, stoning, cutting the edge of the peni# etc.?Be civilized first.Who the hell are you to take the law into your hands? Terrorist [Edited out] like you should be arrested without any delay.

    • 1
      1

      It is ‘I thus fully..’ Clearly English is not even your second language- if you insist on writing in it, get some help.

      Secondly, get an Editor. You are so fond of your own voice and what you think is wit, you go on and on losing the readers interest very quickly.

      Thirdly, try to have SOME balance – it is clear that you are a devoted Ranil fan but your journalistic integrity should call for some representation of the contra. Come to think of it, all your writings are lop-sided – a sad reflection of your professional ethos.

  • 6
    27

    PRIVATIZE health care. The only long term permanent solution for SL. The annual revenue saved by this is enormous. No more doctors, administrators, nurses and other healthcare provider salaries (+ tax shortfalls by giving tax free vehicle permits) and pension headaches. No more maintenance of buildings, equipment and supply of medications etc. There are many foreign private organizations willing to acquire and maintain health care for SL. Initiate a gov. health insurance scheme with the saved money for the poor and the unemployed. All employers should be required to provide health insurance to its employees. Let doctors and other health care personnel be private employees or contract holders.

    • 1
      1

      A stupid person will not have the insight to understand that he/she is stupid. Thanks Ct readers

      • 1
        1

        ken,
        Why don’t you rebuttal rather than talking trash?

  • 9
    9

    The majority of the senior GMOA members work in the PRIVATE hospitals. That means they are not against the private sector in participating and delivering health service in Sri Lanka. As they are not objecting the private hospitals then for what the hell they are protesting students studying at a private medical school.

    GMOA’s conduct is unprofessional, unethical and shamelessly selfish! The govt must go to court and plead that this strike is unlawful.

    Sri Lanka is producing very good doctors but their knowledge and understanding about medical ethics is very poor. SL medical schools must include medical ethics in their curriculum

  • 10
    6

    How many opt to study Medicine because they feel for the sick and have the urge to heal them and tend to them? Most do medicine because of parental pressure and enter medical schools because they top the rat race to score high marks at the advanced level examination. The tuition industry thrives on supporting this rat race. Why do the parents want their children to study medicine? Is it because of their overwhelming desire for their children to be healers? Is’nt it because of the social status and economic security that come as dividends?

    This is the underlying factor that is undermining the ethos of the medical profession in countries like Sri Lanka, India and Pakistan. I agree with the author that many other service providers like teachers and policemen provide vital services in society. Why are we not attracting the best to these services? Is’ nt it the low pay and the accompanying low social status? Who will want to be a teacher, if they can all be medical practioners?

    Further, why should some be given duty free car permits, when the rest of the population is taxed to the highest extent? I can understand the demand to reduce the duty on all vehicle imports. This will be fair and equitable. The governments of the past. have made a mess of the situation and the present is now the victim of past follies.

    Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

  • 9
    16

    High time the civil society take to the street against these corrupt doctors. Hats off to Ranil for putting these buggers in place by not meeting them. Who the hell do they think they are ?

    Thanks to tax payers / free education they are ‘somebody’ today. They are showing their upbringing and the values taught to them by their parents. Shame on them !!

    • 0
      3

      Who the hell is Ranil? he may be a big person for you…..But from the “point of view” of many Sri Lankans, he is a bugger who had the most number of defeats in the Sri Lankan political history.

      In the current context, he is only a looser who cannot solve a single trade union action via negotiations.

      I’m sure your “point of view” is looking only under his sarong. But don’t expect professional organizations would do so.

      • 3
        0

        You keep hanging on to what is under Padeniya’s sarong, Razik ! That’s your favourite past time hobby !!

        We the civil society are working behind the scene. Not too long …….

        As for Ranil, it is not about him or his achievements. At least he did not pay terrorists to win elections. History will decide on him !!

      • 1
        0

        @Razik
        Quote your reply:I’m sure your “point of view” is looking only under his sarong. But don’t expect professional organizations would do so.

        Razik, by saying above you yourself prove what “Point of view” said is correct which is quoted below.
        :They are showing their upbringing and the values taught to them by their parents.

        What sort of professionalism are you talking Razik???

  • 9
    8

    There’s no class among doctors. Are they living in this country? There’s poverty everywhere. Patients or their kith and kins are begging inside buses to meet their medical bills. Government is corrupt and incompetent. People are powerless and helpless. Those who are graduated in some discipline want to rip off poor to raise their status driving around in pajeros or suvs. What a brain they have got. Rotten to the core, but still demanding free benefits that are denied to ordinary citizens, like beggars using their positions without shame from govt. Ravi is also a cause for this situation. Duty free facilities should be denied to all irrespective of the status and be firm in it. Ranil is another by stating their expenses are up and they want increased allowances from 500/- to 20000/- when attending the sittings. Do we need them all together? Get doctors from India. Let GMOA get hanged. Close down Parliament so that the money wasted in MP’s could be saved. Have an alternative system to the parliament where people will get their due. Cant the MP’s use bicycle?

  • 7
    9

    Initiate the “Emergency law” and lock up any quack who does not report to work. One day in welikada and they will sing a different song.

  • 6
    10

    Members of the Medical Profession of an earlier era were from a privileged background.However, it could be said that they had taken the Hippocratic oath.
    Patients came first.
    Most of the present lot have backgrounds which by no means could be classified as privileged.These medical doctors would have been expected to show more concern towards the poor patients.
    For these types Car Permits come first!
    Strange but True.

  • 7
    11

    Honestly this is just despicable. These doctors are trained on the dime of those very patients they are now refusing to treat. Many are sent abroad for further specialization, again, at least in part on the nation’s expense. Then they become pig headed arrogant “gods”. I am a doctor – fortunately did all my training in the US – and I cannot imagine a situation where, just out of respect for this profession, a doctor would simply refuse to go to work. It is not that doctors in the US are that much better off (in relative terms, of course) than doctors in Sri Lanka, such that they have the luxury of not being vexed by policy changes. Doctors in Sri Lanka do very well for themselves – besides their government duty they “pol kadanawa” in their clinics, seeing patients every 5 minutes. Can they really complain? Your average doctor is among the best off in the community, driving fancy vehicles and living in a fancy home. This free-ride mentality, coupled with their god (“deviyo”) like status and the servile populace of the country has simply gone to their heads. Not too long ago I witnessed one of the top ICU’s in Sri Lanka treat my mother, who eventually died of entirely survivable causes. It was pathetic – a tiny community hospital in the United States would have done better with less. Based on this single experience – biased as it may be – has jaded forever my opinion of Sri Lankan doctors. It is high time the government wean these leaches off the citizens’ teat. They’ve been provided enough.

    • 6
      6

      jealousy at it’s best..!!

      • 3
        0

        Oh yes, so jealous not to have to work in the squalor of Sri Lankan ‘hospitals’, expect 18th century clinical outcomes for my patients. Or, maybe you meant I’m jealous that doctors in my neck of the woods don’t have godlike status. Maybe that sends a tickle up some people’s thighs, not mine.

        • 2
          2

          Lotus Eater
          “It is high time the government wean these leaches off the citizens’ teat”

          Then shall we feed them to American sharks?.
          An anecdote to broad brush the services provided by Srilankan health system. your words exemplifies meaning of your name.

          • 3
            0

            Ken Robert,

            “Then shall we feed them to American sharks?.” – is that your argument?
            “your words exemplifies meaning of your name.” – are you in 5th grade?

            I acknowledged that broad brushing the health system based on an anecdote is biased. But whoever believes that the delivery of health care within Sri Lanka’s public-private health system is of high standard, and cost-effective… or for that matter is simply “acceptable” – by any standard – is living a fantasy (much like the lotus eaters – clever, Ken!).

            There is a fine tradition of health equity, through universal health care, but the quality of that care has not kept up with the times. I encourage you to see Lasantha Pethiyagoda’s article on Colombo Telegraph on his experience being hospitalized. Anecdote, certainly. Exception to the norm, absolutely not.

            And let me pre-empt you by saying I’m not comparing countries. Nowhere is health care delivery free of challenges, and certainly not where I practice.

            • 1
              2

              Lotus eater

              I agree that standards of health care whether private or government are substandard or even appalling in comparison to western countries. I worked in both sectors for 10 years before migrating to UK. I would not entirely blame the doctors for the state of affairs of Srilankan health system.

              High collar jobs were once the monopoly of the high society.Now a punchi banda in the south and a nalanagathamby in the north can become a doctor and climb the social ladder. It pains me when people harp on free education and free training of doctors without understanding the yeoman services they provide in government health sector.

              Ofcourse I do not agree with most of the politics of GMOA. I would welcome anyone witj good solutions for both doctors and patients

              • 1
                1

                ken
                You say ” I would not entirely blame the doctors for the state of affairs of Srilankan health system.”
                Why not? If these doctors can stop treating patients for car permits shouldn’t they stop working for the poor state of affairs of SL health system or not ??

    • 1
      0

      Few points..
      1. Majority of docs don’t do private practice. Docs are supposed to work 10 hours a day.sometimes more due to being understaffed (in my case at least) So to work privately after that is a super human feat.
      2. If you belive that your mom passed away due to medical negligence, may she rest in peace, then sue the hospital and doc. I hardly think I have to teach you about malpractice suits if your a practising doc in the us..

      • 0
        1

        Barney
        You are wasting time. In my opinion most of srilankans do not feel for the plight of doctors. As one puts it “you choose this profession so face it”

        • 2
          1

          Ken

          Two appreciations appeared on Thaiveedu.com.

          A strong appreciation of the importance of prof A Vellupillai and prof Noboru Karasimha, two renowned Tamil scholars are being published in Dec 2015.

          To access: thaiveedu.com, click Archives, PDF issues, December 2015, pages 93 & 94.

          The contributions of Noboru Karashima (1933-2015) have been a boon to researches on state formation and the nature of society in south India. By R. CHAMPAKALAKSHMI and Y. SUBBARAYALU

          This can be accessed on frontline.in (25 Dec 2015) under the headline:

          Inspirational genius.

          • 0
            1

            Native
            I read the first half. I will add it to my collection.
            Many thanks

      • 1
        0

        Point 1. I will take your word for it, though I have not seen any stats on the proportion of physicians who legally (and less legally) run private practices in addition to their government jobs. I’m sure such data exists. The general sense I get in the major cities, and even in rural areas where I have previously worked voluntarily with the PDHS offices and their physicians (e.g. Monaragala District, Kilinochchi District) is that government physicians – senior and junior – strive to set up their practices. Eventually these physicians tend to do extremely well for themselves, as they should, for the responsibility and rigor of their work.

        Point 2. I don’t need to resort to suing. It won’t reverse what happened and the less I have to deal with Sri Lankan bureaucracy and judiciary the better. Anyway, in fact I would not hesitate to call it negligence. But I would also add the words ‘apathy’, ‘inefficiency’, and ‘poor understanding of critical illness’ to the mix.

  • 35
    9

    Kalansuriya, seems like you are nothing other than a [Edited out] who is going shopping to current government.Stop giving bullshit arguments that a professional organizations such as GMOA should strike for medicines provided for patients. It is the duty of the government. Not the duty of a trade union of which the priority must be the rights of their members.Not the other way around.You think cancellation of the pension is not a serious issue which should not be addressed by a responsible TRADE UNION? You are a fucking joker man. May be the best in the world at the moment. Opptunistic sick psychos like you who try justify each and every stupid decision taken by the government whom you are going shopping to, should be condemned strongly. It is a pity that you are so backboneless that you couldn’t ask the government to solve this issue promptly as a new year gift the Sri Lankan public.

    • 6
      13

      mr. chamath,
      What kind of a moron are you? If you are a professional and if you are employed by an organization to carry out your profession, what would you do if you are not given the tools to carry out your profession? What do doctors are expected to do? isn’t it healing the sick? If the gov. does not provide the tools needed like diagnostic devices, good laboratory facilities, safe hygienic wards, good post operative care, appropriate and acceptable medications etc. what should a professional do? According to you it is none of their business just carry out with the lousy job they are doing! Are you saying that the sick should go on strike?? It is just like giving a software engineer a 20 year old computer to work with and saying he should not fight to get the latest!
      Hey, if the pension is to be cancelled due to lack of funds no one can do anything about it. These things happen all the time in the west. You are a frog in the well and has no idea how the outside more advanced countries work. If you are not satisfied with the gov. you have the right to vote against it at the next election. This is why I always advice privatizing health care is the only long term solution for SL.

      • 8
        5

        Eusense, seems like you are talking nonsense, while having menses, without any senses.

        According to you,Doctors should “heal the sick” while the government is cancelling their pension, car permit, signing moronic agreements with India, insulting their profession each and every day via stupid morons like you etc.

        According to you they should not do any thing about it & doctors should try to meditate while government is trying to cut off their already prevailed facilities.How stupid are you?

        Forget doctors. Take the software engineer whom you have taken as the example.Think that a software engineer is given a car,salary of 100k, an annual bonus (with par to the pension)and a brand new computer by the company he is working for. What if the company suddenly decides to take back his car asking him to come on foot, deduct his salary to 80k, cancel his annual bonus & take back his brand new computer & give him a 20yr old computer; will the software engineer continue to do what he is “supposed to do” without any objections?????Name me a single professional category anywhere in the world, which will do so? You are an born idiot who cannot understand this simple truth.

        Also you are taking about the tools…If the company is giving the software engineer a 20yr old laptop and expects to work with it,and if the company is satisfied with the workload you are carrying out with that old computer and if the company pays you the same salary, I don’t understand why the software engineer should strike asking for a brand new computer.If the company is providing the latest equipment that is good, but if they are not providing it, employee will continue to work with the facilities they have, despite the potential they have.It is the company’s duty to give the employee the latest equipments and get the maximum out of the employees’ potential and talents.

        I have seen many idiots who uses word such as “advanced countries”, “west”, “Frogs in the well” & try to be posh on the internet.Let me tell you something.You are not the only Sri Lankan living abroad or visited the “advanced west countries”. Many who see this post have visited them.So no need of telling us what those countries do & the facilities they provide for professionals. And from my personal experience,I know what kind of jobs are done by the people who “try to be posh” here, at those “advanced” countries.Most of the time, people like Eusense are at fuel sheds fueling up their A##es (with a privatized pump).LOL

        After all you have correctly said one thing. That is “the sick should go on strike”.

        Yep that is exactly what they should do: The sick ones(general public) should strike (at elections against the incapable uneducated politicians who is creating such messes like this).If the general public continue to appoint uneducated corrupted politicians via their votes, consequences like these strikes is unavoidable.Funny thing is morones like Eusense does not talk about these politicians who receive a pension JUST AFTER 5yrs + DUTY FREE car permit + increasing the parliament attendance allowance from Rs.500 to Rs.20,000.etc etc. Does your advanced west countries do this, frog??As a solution shall we privatize the parliament? LOL

        So Eusense please stop your nonsense.

        • 2
          7

          mr. chamth,
          The more you write the more you show your lack of understanding of the situation. By the way you seem to be a gynecologist talking about menstruation!
          You say “According to you,Doctors should “heal the sick” while the government is cancelling their pension, car permit, signing moronic agreements with India, insulting their profession each and every day via stupid morons like you etc.”
          You are correct that is exactly what I am saying. Let me put it in another way; Don’t compromise lives of the sick while you are fighting for your personal gains. If you are not satisfied with what the gov. is offering go find another employer.
          Your take on Software engineer shows your intellectual capacity.
          What I was implying was carrying out his professional duties with an ancient computer. I don’t think you will ever get it. Try to figure it out! I feel I am wasting my time with you.

          Your next software engineer scenario further shows your ignorance and lack of understanding. I will tell you what a real professional should do. Either demand new equipment or leave for another employee. If he continue to work with what he has thinking the company is satisfied he will soon lose his job anyway. Can you predict why? The company is going to go bankrupt as they are behind others, and at the same time the engineer has acquired no new skills for himself.
          I am now convinced that you are really a frog in the well. Good luck to you.

          • 0
            3

            Mr.Chamath, seems like your 2nd explanation is better & logical than the first explanation.

            @Eusence: Though you systematically answers the chamath’s answer for you, seems like you have deliberately left out the final part which I think the most relevant for the current issue.ie:”Funny thing is morones like Eusense does not talk about these politicians who receive a pension JUST AFTER 5yrs + DUTY FREE car permit + increasing the parliament attendance allowance from Rs.500 to Rs.20,000.etc etc. Does your advanced west countries do this, frog??As a solution shall we privatize the parliament? LOL”

            Think Chamath is 100% correct here & seems like Eusense solution of privatizing each & everything is not a practical solution. BECAUSE we saw how the PRIVATE banks of SL involved in the recent strike shutting down even the ATM machines of the banks.If privatization is the sole solution to everything,how did it happen? Didn’t the general public was penalized by that action?

            The government sector should be always there to compete with private sector. Monopoly to any sector will be a major disaster.

            Current issue is solely based on the fact that politicians are not leading the country by example.They keep their permit & cut down on others.It won’t simply work.if someone think that these type of plots can be solved by privatization, he is a mere idiot who don’t even have the IQ to look into the other side of the story.

            So Dear Eusense, sorry to say but, seems like you are the “Frog in the well” here may be with some political sunglasses.

            Mr.Chamath, Strike shouldn’t be the 1st line of defense as doctors are dealing with lives of the people.But couldn’t blame doctors totally after looking at the selfishness of politicians who create these messes.

            • 2
              2

              ruchira
              First I need to say that mr. chamath is a waste of time for me. Hope you are not!
              I haven’t left out anything deliberately unanswered. I am not discussing politicians and their corrupt perks here. Everybody knows that and That should be discussed under a different discussion. I don’t know why he brought politicians to this. Everybody knows how corrupt they are. Is he trying to say that politicians are corrupt and waste country’s wealth and therefore doctors should do the same? I feel you might understand him better. If the doctors want to take politicians to task they should do so and I will support them but not by putting the sick in jeopardy.

              For your information, yes, advance country politicians vote themselves similar perks. It appears that you too fall into the “frog” scenario! What “Parliament privatizing” are you talking about?? Do you think this is a relevant question for what is discussed here?
              Your Bank striking scenario is a good example of poor management. There are thousands of private companies that have gone almost bankrupt and there are some which have since recovered and doing well after new management. A good example is Hewlett Packard.
              I don’t know how you assumed that my preference is to privatize everything! What do you think, continuously inefficient gov. enterprises generating no revenue to the gov. and losing money at every turn and saddled with strikes every six months should continue to be under the gov?? Not me. I don’t want my tax money wasted on such enterprises. Do you know any gov.sector that is competing neck to neck with the private sector without gov. subsidies?
              You say;
              “Current issue is solely based on the fact that politicians are not leading the country by example.They keep their permit & cut down on others. It won’t simply work.”
              May be it is hard for you to understand, but the current issue I am discussing is not politicians and who get permits or not. It is all about compromising the lives of the sick by doctors for car permits!

              You further say; “if someone think that these type of plots can be solved by privatization, he is a mere idiot who don’t even have the IQ to look into the other side of the story.”
              Using the term “idiot” seems to be the only rebuttal you have when you don’t agree with some one! Why not use your brain and come up with a solution?

              My argument is simple, that is; no healthcare professional should put their patients life in jeopardy for any reason. That is why it is considered a noble profession.

  • 25
    8

    The person who has this article should understand that GMOA is a trade union . Primary purpose of it betterment of the workers . Its the responsiblity of the government and administrative department to look after the client .

    Well! All hospitals should be updated and patients should get treatment! Its the duty of health ministry to lookafter that issue. If not ,public and media should raise the voice ,its not docotor`s sole responsibility and doctors are not that much rich to by drugs on their own.
    Dont do you have a writer with backbone to write against inefficiency of ministry?

    Your prime complaint is car permit!

    Well , its abolished for both staffs and parliamentarians but now its restored completely to parliamentarian while ignoring staff. Dont you have a single writer with backbone to write about this?

    KDU is having a SLMC recognisation. Its not a private college. Its a government college training doctors with army training to serve for forces.Even govermnet is paying for those students. They have well defined criteria for admission.

    But what happen with SAITM?

    Just call and inqiure , they say we are recognised universit , at the end of the course we will post them to government hospital . How can cheat like this without SLMC recognition?
    What is the criteria for their admission? why they are not publishing eligibilty criteria of their students even after repeated request?
    Why why why?

    Dont you have a single writer with back bone to write these or are you paid not to write?

    Please find some qualified people to your media and stop this media prostitution !

    • 2
      0

      Car permit which was abolished is reinstated for parliamentarians, so we too need ours reinstated. That is part of your argument.
      Giving parliamentarians a car permit is wrong.It allows them to cheat millions which would otherwise go to govt coffers as tax. Doctors or any other profession pointing at this wrong doing and demanding same is shameful. People want car permits given at their expense to be abolished – Irrespective of whom they are given to.

  • 13
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    We all know that Srilanka is under an economic crisis at the moment thanks to policies of past governments and somewhat due to the present government.Hence as professionals we do understand there is need of cost cutting and increasing the efficiency of all services. We are ready for a sacrifice. This should at every level, especially the politicians. Now is this what is happening now.?No..!!
    1.Their vehicle permit (Unlike ours it’s 0% tax without any limitations on the amount) has been granted again. They can import a vehicle every 5 yearly at the start of their career as a MP. As I heard for this they are given special loan schemes at very low interest rates.
    2.They have increased their daily allowances for parliamentary attendance from Rs.500 to Rs20’000/= i.e- by 4000%..!!!
    3.And not mention they have official vehicles, drivers, fuel allowances, staff allowances etc..
    4. They are entitled to a pension after their term in parliament, special insurance schemes
    As professionals are we asking for any of these.?NO.!! We are only asking
    1.To give back our vehicle permit (Which is comparatively a very ordinary one)
    2.we are ashamed of telling anyone what our basic salary is.. Whatever the amount we gain is through allowances..Now the government is going to cut down them or tax from them as well..Please don’t do it..
    3. Maintain the pension scheme as it is a good way to attract professionals to the government sector to serve people in every remote corner in the country..
    BASICALLY OUR PLEA IS NOT TO CUT OFF WHAT EVER THE SMALL PRIVILEGES WE HAVE.

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      The gist of this is “want want want”. After 5 years of free medical education and truly unparalleled job security. To whom much is given, much is expected. Stop whining. Put patients first. If the doctors have an issue with the government, take it up with the government. Not the patients who toil despite their suffering to come and wait in hot smell fly infested waiting rooms to be glanced at by a doctor at the rate of Rs. 200 per minute. As someone else here as said – the first duty is to the patient. If you do that right, maybe they will support you in your efforts for better benefits.

  • 13
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    Do Sri Lankans generally suffer from a lack of ethical responsibility towards each other?

    Do farmers not control the amount of pesticides they spray on consumables in order to increase their output and result in lethally harmful residue that is absorbed by human bodies?

    Do food manufacturers use highly toxic textile colouring because it is far cheaper than food colouring?

    Do medical reps sell or promote more profitable brands of pharmaceuticals (higher commissions from substandard makers) although their quality in terms of side effects and harm from long-term use are greater than other less profitable brands?

    Do private hospitals and diagnostic laboratories charge patients exorbitant rates and add charges at will, knowing the helplessness of vulnerable patients who are often spending far more than they can afford, merely to be able to have a bed and cleaner toilet than in a public hospital?

    Do doctors who work at public hospitals see a patient in their private clinics with a view to making money rather than serve someone who is at their mercy as they are obliged to?

    What is more important to us as human beings? Amassing even more personal wealth at the cost of poor lives, or general upliftment of society where everyone benefits?

    I feel there are serious issues in the area of ethical conduct by most people whose over-riding preoccupation is personal gain over common good or being a source of relief for the poor, disadvantaged or vulnerable who are most often at the mercy of the powerful. Even in the matter of life and death !

  • 11
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    It is time the patients of Sri Lanka and their suffering families step up and tell all the striking doctors to go to hell!

    Since 1978 the damned doctors have been a pampered lot. They have pensions from the govt for the little work they do in their wards at the hospitals, tax free channeled earnings, Duty free cars and fellowships every couple of years to boot. And these greedy …… want more. And, they have the audacity to pretend they are doing all this for OUR SAKES!!

    Why does a govt doctor need a duty free car every few years, when the engineers, lawyers and the rest travel by their own vehicles, duty paid? Do they visit any patients in the night for free?

    They claim it is for the hardship of working in remote areas. Well, let the ministry of Health provide them with an official vehicle for that. What about the FREE EDUCATION we gave these ungrateful…… Did they really think we paid for that because they were born special?

    There has to be a cut-off point where the good of the country should be the only priority. If we count the freebies these characters have enjoyed for the last 30 years, it might have been cheaper to contract foreign doctors on 2 year stints and got them to see patients for a little more than 4 minutes a pop. That too, with written records that can be read by someone else.

    The private hospitals are part and parcel of this racket and the President, having been a Minister of Health for an extended stint may also be part of the problem….He wants to please everyone who comes calling at his door, trying to play the good cop, whilst painting his UNP colleagues as the extremists.

    The Prime Minister has a chance in a million to make the Health Service to sit up and take notice of the thousands of neglected patients who have been ignored whilst the doctors, nurses and attendants get their perks. He will go down in history as PM of the second collapsed UNP govt, or as the man who made things right, at least the the second time round. Having a shit-head as Health Minister does not help at all because all he is interested is in stirring trouble for the UNP govt, so he can benefit from the outcry. What happened to the 50M he got from Avante Garde. Is nobody curious about this anymore, phone recordings notwithstanding. Are we really a banana republic with a so-called 98% literacy rate? Does the CID only investigate when they are asked to? Is that how it is supposed to happen.

    Ranil Wickremesinghe has a bunch of incompetent loud-mouths as ministers and hopefully will get the right people in place,when the next re-shuffle happens. There is no chance in hell of getting anything done right with the present lot.

    This is Sirisena and Wickremesinghe playing survival politics, whilst Rajapakse and company keep fanning the slightest ember into a flame. The rest of the crooks in parliament are making hay whilst the sun shines…with the CID and Bribery commission chasing their own tails. I have never read of the FBI or Scotland Yard releasing daily briefings about their investigations. Only when arrests are made or cases filed, does one hear the facts. Who is leaking these details or who is making up these fairy tales?

    • 5
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      Would like to pay attention to some of your “ideas”
      1. “little work they do in their wards at the hospitals” Come and spend a day at he hospital an u’ll realize.Probably u’ll faint after seeing blood,so please dont..

      2. “Why does a govt doctor need a duty free car every few years, when the engineers, lawyers and the rest travel by their own vehicle” – Seriously u dont know anything..Are u living in Srilanka.?Other professionals(e.g – engineers, SLAS, Judiciary officers) are also being provided with vehicle permits eventhough MOST OF THE TIME THEY ARE BEING PROVIDED WITH A OFFICIAL VEHICLE..

      3. “Provide vehicles to work in remote areas” – Do you know that some remote hospitals does not even have an ambulance.?? And some doctors travel by push bicycles.?

      Final advise – Before commenting on public forums please get your facts right..If not as lord Buddha once said “remain silent if you don’t have anything productive to say”

  • 12
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    Executives in the public sector are entitled to transport facilities by circular 2299. Think about the cost to the government to provide official transport facilities which would include cost of the vehicle, drivers wages, fuel expenses and maintenance. It’s because it’s economically difficult for the government to provide this that professionals have been satisfied with a permit with tax concessions every 5 years. Through the permit the professional gets a tax concession. For example if he buys a vehicle worth 2 million he still pays tax of around 1.7 million which is almost the vehicle value. So the government is actually gaining revenue through this alternative to providing official transport. The government doesn’t spend anything. Some people try to argue that private sector employees too should get similar concessions. What they fail to understand is that the employer of Public sector employees is the government and it’s according to government circulars that public sector employees request these facilities from their employer. Whereas private sector employees of similar grade get official vehicle or vehicle allowance from their employer. They don’t need permits. I agree with the role of tax payers money. But then everybody pays tax. And sometimes you cannot measure everything by money. You have to consider statistics like lowest infant and maternal mortality rates and life expectancy of 77, which are highest for a developing country.

    Some people don’t understand the gravity of effects of the trade agreement with India. Recently applications were called for 368 clerical jobs at a firm in India. There were almost 3 million applications, which included 250+ PHD holders and 150000 graduates. Imagine 250+ PHD holders being jobless and applying for clerical jobs. Another study done in India itself found that 47% of Indian graduates are ‘unemployable’. Such a large percentage of graduates being ‘Unemployable’ only reflects the quality of the tertiary education system in India. So imagine what if our jobs were open to Indians. They would come and work for half the amount we work for. What would happen to our unemployment rate? It would shoot up won’t it? Getting technological input is fine but opening our job market is suicidal.

    Regarding SAITAM, the question arises whether it has the standards for proper medical training. The problems the author raises about Rajarata or Eastern medical faculties are even worse at SAITAM. In fact the major problem at SAITAM is with the clinical training they receive. They claim to have 1000+ beds but the actual number is less. The bed occupancy is also low. SAITAM has 850 students and each student has less that 1 inward patient for clinical training. Is that sufficient for a proper clinical training? And when it charges 12 million for a student, which is much higher than what a foreign medical graduate would pay for his degree, can’t it provide proper training for them? SAITAM students should first sue the university for misleading them in to this mess. SAITAM said it had SLMC recognition, it said it was affiliated to a Russian university, it said clinical training would be done in Russia, it said degree is recognised in UK etc. which are all false. Besides no where in the World do you put up the university, recruit students, train them for 2-3 years and then start making a hospital. It’s attached to a fully functioning hospital with all facilities for training and subspecialities that a medical college is put up and not vice versa. And before recruiting students you need to have a minimum patient to medical student ratio. SAITAM has way too many students for its patients. Besides, SAITAM has not even invited SLMC annually for inspections and has failed to implement recommendations from its few visits. To add to it, SAITAM only has UGC approval for 5 or 6 courses but not medicine. So how did SAITAM put up a medical college in the first place? One may wonder with so many legal and quality issues how did SAITAM manage to survive all these years? How did it manage to recruit 850 students? How did it manage to coerce itself through our medical education system disregarding SLMC recommendations? It did it with sheer political Influence. It did it in the previous government with the help of the previous education minister. Now it’s done with the help of the government. You just have to see the number of relatives of parliamentarians at SAITAM to understand their vested interests.

    It’s funny how the health Ministry officials discuss matters about SAITAM clinical training the day before the court case and give the solution to the courts even when the courts don’t suggest anything of that sort. Now it has come to a point where government hospitals are to be used for clinical training for Rs. 50000 per student. Is this sum fair when considering the 12 million SAITAM charges per student. Why should the doctors or other staff in these hospitals teach students of a 100% profit making organisation for free? Is it ethical to use patients admitted to these hospitals for clinical training of students of a totally profit making business? There’s no question about SAITAM trying to force itself through the medical education system disregarding all its flaws with the help of politicians in the future too. The admission criteria of SAITAM is still a mystery. In some way or the other if SAITAM completes it’s training, how will they be absorbed to the government sector? Is it through a screening test? If so who will conduct their screening exams? Is it the SLMC? Or is it SAITAM itself? If so how can we guarantee standards from a business which has failed to maintain standards all the while? Then questions arise as to how they will be ranked for enrolment? Anywhere in the world graduates from state universities are ranked first. Then non state university graduates, including private medical college graduates and foreign graduates are ranked. Is it the same way? Or will SAITAM have a separate list for themselves with political backing? Anything is possible with the distance SAITAM has come with political backing. They may even get preferences in appointment to stations of their preferred choice. Only God knows what’s in store.
    You need to look at our neighboring country, India to see what unregulated poor quality medical education has done to its medical education system and the health system. Twenty years back India eased the regulations on private medical education. Then there were only 11 private medical colleges. Today there are 215. Some of them are world class. The problem is with the rest which have poor standards and produce poor quality doctors. They have inadequate staff and minimum admissions to their hospitals. These medical colleges pay doctors to pose as faculty staff and others to pose as patients when inspectors visit the faculty. Even if the medical council finds shortcomings or deficiencies in these faculties it’s unable to act because they are either owned by politicians or have political backing. You don’t even have to pass exams to get your degree. You just could bribe your way through. The admission criteria to these faculties too has been questioned. It’s alleged that large sums are payed as bribes to get admission due to high demand. It has been found that Indian doctors were 6 times more likely to lose there right to practice medicine in the UK compared to doctors from other countries. That’s the quality of Indian doctors some revere. I urge readers to read a report by Readers and the British Medical Journal on Indian medical education.

    So the question arises as to where our medical education is heading? Is it improving in quality? Or is it degrading? It’s definitely degrading with the initiation of SAITAM. Then the question arises as to whether we are heading towards another India? Looks like we are. If politicians decide on medical education and it’s standards in no time we’ll be producing low quality doctors from a number of private medical colleges that will pop up during the course of the next decade or so. And they don’t have to maintain standards. They can always say if SAITAM didn’t have standards why should we? Simple logic. It’s of course good news for those who don’t care about quality and just want to buy a medical degree somehow. Let’s hope for the best.

    And regarding doctors trade union actions… Doctors are the only workers who go to work on a strike day. They go to work, see all emergencies, see critical patients, do emergency operations, see patients in wards etc. So it’s only the OPD patients and clinic patient that are not seen. Why don’t you journalists highlight this side of a doctors strike too.

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    [Edited out]

  • 9
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    @Ranga Kalansooriya: Seems like you [Edited out] who is doing media prostitution on internet hiding the real facts.Not only doctors, any citizen of Sri Lanka, with a single ounce of brain should strongly oppose CEPA with india. Are you kidding? Read the following article by BBC.

    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-34276253

    It explains the gravity of unemployment in India at the moment.I can’t understand why Sri Lanka need an CEPA agreement with such an “Hingana” country overwhelmed with unemployment.Ranil says he will not sign CEPA.So far Ranil is playing “saying one thing & doing another thing” game.So no one can have faith on what Ranil “says”; because according to news, he is going to sign “ECTA” which is going to be the same CEPA agreement in a different name. It is like renaming “Siripala” as “Sugathadasa”. Only the name is changed, but the content is the same.

    http://www.dailynews.lk/?q=2015/12/09/business/indo-lanka-economic-pact-ecta-mid-next-year

    If this CEPA/ECTA is signed anyhow, every Sri Lankan from laborer to mason to IT professionals to other high ranked Sri Lankan professionals, will get affected, loosing their jobs & will create an unnecessary tension in Sri Lankan society.In response to this tension built, Ranil will crack a joke in the parliament,(as he is doing daily now), saying, “I said I will not sign CEPA, Did I ever told you that I will not sign ECTA?? LOl LOl…”. And remember,if that day comes in the future…that day will be the day, that all Sri Lankans get fu#ked up at once. [Edited out]

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      Ajith,

      In simple terms, GMOA is a trade union run by a mafia of corrupt,greedy,politically affiliated, unprofessional people to say the least. The only reason why I think GMOA opposes CEPA is the fear that Indian medical doctors may come and work in SL thereby challenging their monopoly and diluting their chances of earning money via private channeling.

      I consider Ranga Kalansooriya as a responsible educated citizen of the country who has raised some very valid points against a corrupted mafia. As it can happen only in SL, you have used the word prostitution to describe what he has written. Before pointing the finger at Ranga or anyone else, please note it is the GMOA who has been prostituting what used to be a noble profession.

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        Chris, According to my knowledge, 16 other professional trade unions joined the strike along with GMOA. So are they also “a mafia of corrupt,greedy,politically affiliated, unprofessional people” ????

        According to you, CEPA only affects Doctors. If so, why the hell others also got involved in the recent strike??

        Chris…Don’t try to be a saint here. Seems like you are just a narrow minded politically influenced “BOY” just like Sagala & Akila. Ummmah Ranil.

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          Razik

          It is a foolish attempt to try to justify the action of GMOA mafia by saying other trade unions too joined your action. Other trade unions joined may or may not be as bad as GMOA. It is a case by case analysis. However,GMOA and its membership by their behaviour have been showing they are much worse and much more greedier than others by keeping patients as ransom.

          If you read my previous reply again I never said CEPA affects only doctors. What I said was doctors oppose it as it may adversely affect their income earning potential.

          Quote your reply : Chris…Don’t try to be a saint here. Seems like you are just a narrow minded politically influenced “BOY” just like Sagala & Akila. Ummmah Ranil.
          This shows how mean the supporters of GMOA(probably the so called educated doctors) can go in attacking their criticism….Honestly, people expect intellectual counter arguments from doctors in a forum like this.

  • 9
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    It’s from the great physician Dr. M Ragunathan words. Without your permission sir.
    I am in the evening of life retired from govt service after 35years of service as a doctor and i can assure you i have worked to every cent you have paid for my education together with my father who too paid his taxes religiously
    I have struck work as a member of GMOA often agreeing with the union and many times disagreeing with the union but still as its member.
    But never was a day during strike i stayed home and watched television played cricket or went on trips for which i never had time till i retired.It was during the times of strike we worked harder to make sure no lives are lost due to strike.True routine surgeries were cancelled clinics were not run but the emergencies were handled.
    You must have a son or daughter in the medical field to understand the plight of a doctor .From the time they enter the faculty till they become a consultant,and even after they do become the sacrifices of family life week ends night on calls ,the long hours of work during internship and postgraduate training-one need to be there to see the life of a doctor
    Once a Deputy Commisioner of Income tax told me that he was jealous of the money doctors are making until his daughter became a medical student,then only he realised what a life a medical student ubdergo to become a basic doctor
    I am sure none of you have become a patient or one of your beloved ones came critically ill and saw them how the hospital where they were treated got them out,you wont be writing all nonsense ,had you had the ecperience
    As a senior retired physician i see and i hear people telling nowadays doctors are not like those days doctors
    My answer for that is simple,where these doctors come from?Society!The society which has no moral values,has selfishness that overrides any reasons or justice ,be it on the road or workplace &its the same society from where these doctors born bred and grew up and do not expect wonders from them,and they will be no different to you!But the altruism dedication and empathy they develop over years of rigorous training in medical school and hospitals most of them become above the average citizen in performing their duties with dedication and purpose
    The doctors who are inhuman,selfish moneyminded (there are bunch of them i do not disagree) will not be bothered of any rubbish written on them but my concern is about the dedicated hard working junior doctors who are at times inappropriate things against what is hurled against them i am writing this to make them feel not every one whom they are looking after are ungrateful and rude
    Please stop doctor bashing not for your sake ,for the sake of millions of people who need the selfless service of doctors in this country .

    • 4
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      megal,
      Are you implying that a student who enters a Medical School does not know what he/she is getting into, specifically the hard work involved as a student and as an early trainee? This is one reason why western medical schools look for real interest and love for the medical profession by looking at health related voluntary work, research involvement, essay writing and grilling interviews before students are admitted. Have you ever heard of doctors on strike in these countries?
      Demanding tax free car permits and compromising lives of the sick as a weapon for materialistic gain does not speak well for the profession.

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        “Have you ever heard of doctors on strike in these countries?” – You obviously haven’t heard about the near strike by U.K. Junior doctors last month. Of course they don’t strike as often as they are rewarded for their services appropriately. Doctors are human beings too with all their faults and have a huge added responsibility. They are not altruistic angels who will work themselves to death for your so called moral satisfaction. Many have little to no family life and no financial stability, not all doctors have a roaring private practice as is the general impression. Unseen to most of the colombo sofa internet social warriors are the thousands of doctors who toil in godforsaken areas in little hospitals and small towns. These are the doctors affected most by the new policies. So many of you are quick to want to privatise the health sector. Do you think the poor village grandmother will be able to afford health insurance? And the fully privatised Health System in the United States has proven to be riddled with problems they still can’t solve. Sri Lanka has the best public healthcare system with the lowest mortality statistics in South Asia, this is principally due to the quality of doctors and other staff who are employed. This is not just about car permits and salaries. If it is the wish of the people and the government to bring down hundreds of Indian doctors with unverifiable degrees, or employ doctors from Private institutions with substandard clinical training that is their deathwish. One day when you or your family member falls seriously ill you will understand and you will have to get off your high horse. You think that doctors are striking to increase their personal profits? You expect them to lie down when politicians try to dismantle the health sector? Why don’t you look at the motives of the government instead of pointing fingers straight at the doctors? Or are you incapable of such a simple mental act?

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          Touched a nerve ?

          All these problems started when these so called ‘Doctors’ started playing politics for their own advantage. Being ‘professionals’ there is a way to go about.

          There is no difference between the private bus driver Gamunu Wijeratne and this Padeniya guy !

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            @Point of view… Well said

            There is no difference between the private bus driver Gamunu Wijeratne and this Padeniya guy !

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          saman
          Doctors going on strike in UK is a good example why we need privatized health care. As long as the gov. is involved like in the NHS in UK these are unavoidable. But have you ever heard of strikes in the US?
          I don’t agree with you saying that doctors should “work themselves to death for your so called moral satisfaction”. I am not asking that, but I don’t agree when they compromise patient’s lives for their personal issues. They should arrive at negotiated settlements with the employers. If that is not possible they should look for other employers.
          Regarding SL you need to keep in mind that ours is a third world country. What we can spend on health care is limited. Additionally, the health ministry does not bring any revenue for the gov. Tax free car permits, engaging in private practice and special allowances are not RIGHTS they are PRIVILEGES given by the gov. And any of these can and should be gotten rid of under relevant circumstances. Under these conditions I feel it is time that the gov. get rid of special privileges to all sectors. Unhappy? find another employer or may be another profession.
          If you had read my earlier post above I have explained how a poor grand mother can be had health insurance.
          You say “Unseen to most of the colombo sofa internet social warriors are the thousands of doctors who toil in godforsaken areas in little hospitals and small towns.” What do you think? All doctors should be working only in Colombo?? What? when they entered medical school they thought They will treat only people of Colombo? Your excuses are lame and you need to smell the reality.

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            Eusense you realise by your so called solution, doctors should find other employers, means that doctors should quit the government sector and either go full time private or migrate – and that of course wouldn’t “compromise patient’s lives”. And you obviously have no idea about the health care system in the U.S. even though it is the most advanced, it is not at all equitable or universal, watch the Micheal Moore documentary “Sicko”. You think private health insurance is the panacea for all the ills in the health sector? You know how much trouble some people face getting payments passed for auto crashes from some insurance companies?? Imagine if it was your loved one and the insurance company found some technicality and refused payment? And how would you provide insurance for unemployed destitute, illiterate and vulnerable individuals, oh maybe you don’t see them from where you are? And your last reply to my statement regarding rural doctors. Every doctor realises that they have to work where they are posted, some don’t like it and join the private sector or leave to work abroad, but many don’t. In fact privatisation would benefit doctors in the long run as it is profit based. But it would slowly kill those who couldn’t afford it.
            According to you, going on so called strike, (i.e. where only O.P.D. and clinics do not function-all admissions, wards, theatres etc do function) is worse than reverting to a system where all citizens will not be able to find healthcare? Eusense if you are working for an insurance company, I get it, you are pushing an agenda, but as a human being, you don’t seem to have any genuine empathy for the patients and nothing to say about your empathy for doctors as human beings.

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              saman,
              It is amazing that you feel it is fine for doctors to go on strike so often for car permits etc. compromising lives of the sick, but when I say quit gov. service or privatize healthcare you are shedding so much tears for the sick and poor!
              What a hypocrisy?

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      With due respect to this well reasoned argument, doctors ought to also know what they are signing up for when they choose to pursue medicine. Being on call is part and parcel of this career. My main argument however is what whatever grievance the medical community has in Sri Lanka – the hostage should NEVER be the patient. Run a campaign and shame the government to action. Allowing patients to languish without care – and indeed patients WILL die if doctors aren’t around to care for them – is tantamount to negligence. No car permit is worth a human life.

  • 8
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    Dear anura please stop your media prostitution come to real world your history and present letters are totally biased.what do you think and your view on politician allowance ? Why are you dumb these matters ? Because your pen tightly bond with dollars …ha? Pathetic media joker. …

  • 2
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    dr ragunath

    “You must have a son or daughter in the medical field to understand the plight of a doctor .From the time they enter the faculty till they become a consultant,and even after they do become the sacrifices of family life week ends night on calls ,the long hours of work during internship and postgraduate training-one need to be there to see the life of a doctor”

    Almost every doctor father I know, insists on their children becoming doctors – even if by sending them to private med school or overseas – despite often the protests of the son/ daughter. God alone knows how thet get the millions needed for this sacrificial enterprise while on an SL rupee salary !!!

    I used to wonder why – now I am convinced it is because of their wish that the progeny too should gather altruistic merit despite all the pain you say they undergo.

    Did your tax mate then decide to go soft on long suffering doctors’ incomes – that will be a nice bit to add to your story.

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      Dr. Ragunath is right. You guys confront doctors until you or your loved ones become critically ill. I hope that’s not far away from now on. Let’s wait and see!

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        FM,
        Sadly, I know many ill, some critically and others not, died under poor care of our doctors.

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          Eusense, It is sad that you don’t know a single patient, whom got cured under the care of our Doctors. I’m sure you always consulted foreign doctors from your childhood on.Is it?

          Be glad that an idiot like you are still alive thanks to the Sri Lankan doctor’s treatments.

          Get lost you [Edited out]

          • 2
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            razik
            who said I don’t know anybody who got cured??
            What an idiot are you?

        • 1
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          Non(Eu)sense
          Sadly, I know many ill, some critically and others not, died under poor care of our doctors

          OK. if you have the bxxls or ovarxxs then report to SLMC. Your careless comments are as damaging as above statement.

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            ken Robert

            “Sadly, I know many ill, some critically and others not, died under poor care of our doctors.”

            Nuisance has been suffering from an unnamed incurable disease that Doctors aren’t familiar with. It afflicts mostly the very stupid people.

            A spell in the jungle might help her.

            A word of caution: keep away from such people.

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              Thanks
              I am very wary of eusense.
              Ken

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            Report to SLMC???
            For what??

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        Fareena Munira, but if they do become critically ill, the doctors might be on STRIKE! Why? Because they didn’t get their tax-free permit to buy a Toyota Prado (or whatever else is in vogue). And they will then succumb to their critical illness… which I sense is what you seem to have wished upon them.

        Doctors who put patient lives at risk for the sake of car permits deserve bashing. Doctors are held to a far higher standard than any other profession anywhere. Take pride in your job and live up to it. The money will come and you can buy your car – maybe not your Prado, but some car. Shame on the GMOA and the defenders of the car permit strike.

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          Lotuseater, if you took a minute to see how the strike is carried out you would realise that all emergency services are kept running, all wards are open, operation theaters function. The strike affects only the OPD and clinics.ie. The strike is merely symbolic and no patient’s lives are put at risk. If the government actually cared about the welfare of their citizens they would listen to the concerns of the healthcare providers instead of ignoring them. And if you would stop focusing on the permit you would understand there are so many more factors which ultimately will affect all the professionals in the country as well as the health sector. Simplifying it to a level of a car permit strike only reveals your own simple-mindedness.

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            Saman
            You are wasting your time with lotuseater. He may be well versed in the nuances of quality health care but he does not emapathise with ground realities facing srilankan doctors.

          • 2
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            Your clarification is useful. Thanks. Unfortunately though, the spin machine of the GMOA has failed to convey the strike as such. Your comrade Malinda above, for instance, ranks the demands as pertaining entirely to the following three issues. I quote directly:

            “1.To give back our vehicle permit (Which is comparatively a very ordinary one) 2.we are ashamed of telling anyone what our basic salary is.. Whatever the amount we gain is through allowances..Now the government is going to cut down them or tax from them as well..Please don’t do it.. 3. Maintain the pension scheme as it is a good way to attract professionals to the government sector to serve people in every remote corner in the country..”

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    All the fellow Sri Lankans are SAINTS except doctors.
    I have one thing to tell, Mr. Kalansooriya(sorry Dr.Kalansooriya) [Edited out]

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    I am amazed as to how some people on this forum pick just one oddity in another person’s comment and go all out to demonise and humiliate him, while the core issues in discussion are ignored, in the emotions of the moment.

    I have outlined in my previous comment above, a significant part of the spectrum of social phenomena in SL where ethical conduct is absent. I would like to know if any of the situations in the areas highlighted are factually incorrect.

    While I do not blame one entity for all social ills, one must be cognizant of the power available (if needed) by health and allied professionals to make things better for the people. The question remains: “Is anyone really bothered?”

    I would like to direct you to a horrific situation I personally experienced in July this year as a public hospital in-patient. When everyone emphasises only their own grievances (very relative by most standards)it is worth putting oneself in the shoes of an ordinary citizen to see what he goes through:

    https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/horrors-of-ward-30-at-teaching-hospital-kandy/

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      lasantha,
      If you go through the posts here you will realize that the majority in SL supports the states quo. Unless Sri Lankans open their eyes and look around what happens outside nothing will change. Only exception would be handing over the health ministry to some one like Gotabaya R. who did an excellent job in cleaning up Colombo.

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