Are our doctors properly trained?

Are our doctors properly trained?

by Tam Yeng Siang

I read the letter written by Tam Yong Yuee with interest and with a bit of concern.

As with his usual observant self, he has highlighted with a single example, how casual and nonchalant our medical profession has become, typically in Government clinics and hospitals.

It really amazes me that a Retired Primary School English Teacher (albeit a very good one), can be more circumspect in the diagnosis of our aunt, as compared to the presumptous view of the young doctor in attendance who has diagnosed her to have the Parkinsons’ disease.

Besides the absence of the ‘resting tremors’ that Yong Yee has observed, our aunt has also not suffered any speech impediment/deterioration in her years of having the trembling limbs symptom.

This is where my concern comes in. Are our young doctors serving in the thousands of clinics and hospitals adequately trained to treat our citizens properly?

If perchance they do not have the necessary experience when examining patients, do they take a moment to reflect, or even consult their references or their seniors, like what my brother did through Google?

To me, a doctor’s job begins when he finds himself stumped by a patient’s problems, and he tries to find a correct evaluation.

Have our doctors been trained to be discerning, or to just hazard a guess, like you and me. I am concerned.

(Letter by Tam Yong Yuee, published in NST 3.7.07, as follows:)

NST Online : Letters

Logical step


RECEIVING accreditation from an organisation like the Joint Commission International (JCAI) for our hospitals is a logical step in the provision of good health care for Malaysia as well as promoting the medical tourism industry — “Seek world-class recognition” (NST, June 29). It’s a win-win situation.

We need not worry about the private hospitals as they are profit-driven and are willing to pay for the best brains and expertise and invest in world-class infrastructure.

Government hospitals, though much better than before, still have a lot of room for improvement. With alleged cases of negligence happening once too often for comfort, this will be one aspect that needs looking into.

Once I brought my aged aunt (in her 80s) for an appointment in a government hospital.

The young doctor took one look at her and wrote Parkinson’s in her medical record card.

Not convinced, I did a Google search on “Tremors” and confirmed my suspicions that my aged aunt is suffering from a condition called “essential tremor” that occurs in people above 60, and linked to the ETM1 and ETM2 genes.

One of the tell-tale signs for Parkinson’s is “resting tremor” which did not occur in my aunt’s case.

What I am driving at is that to attain JCI-accreditation, government hospitals must ensure that their medical and nursing staff are of high calibre, well trained, committed and caring.

Many talented Malaysians who were rejected when they applied for a place in the medical faculty of local universities ended up serving in a neighbouring country which offered them scholarships, attractive terms of service, comfortable working and living conditions and, most importantly, recognition of their talents.

JCI-accreditation can be attained if the Health Ministry, together with the Education Ministry, remains focused on the relevant tasks and not be distracted by issues not related to health care and education.

  1. #1 by Godfather on Thursday, 5 July 2007 - 11:10 am

    You don’t go to a government hospital unless you can’t afford to go to a private hospital. Or if you get into an accident at 3 a.m. and you need a few stitches here and there.

    You know how the majority nowadays evaluate their doctors ? You look at his/her qualification. If it includes a foreign specialised qualification like MRCP, or MRCOG, you are looking at a specialist. If it is purely a local qualification, you check the university. If it is UKM, it is not as good as University Malaya. If it is University of Malaya, you guess the year in which the doctor qualified. The more recent it is, the more you have to worry.

    Sad, isn’t it ?

  2. #2 by blastmeister on Thursday, 5 July 2007 - 11:33 am

    they should know that working in government hospital will gave them good benefits in the exchange with lower wages comparing to private hospital. they should know it. Don’t blame the wages that made them unable to perform professionally. Some doctors in government hospital should realise that they are not working in a 9-to-5 environment, so show some professional attitude to their work and their patient. The patient do not owe you. Okay?

  3. #3 by rayden on Thursday, 5 July 2007 - 11:50 am

    To be frankly,
    i dont mind the fees that they put on the patient..
    it is the attitude and services are not worth the money that is paid.

  4. #4 by Jonny on Thursday, 5 July 2007 - 11:53 am

    My confidence in Malaysia medicare was no longer there since 10 years ago. I pray hard daily I do not need to go into one!

  5. #5 by oedipus on Thursday, 5 July 2007 - 11:54 am

    we should give the young doctors some time to mature as they get into the profession guys! i mean, they are just humans and they will make some mistakes and bad calls, (just as long no loss of life involved).

  6. #6 by dawsheng on Thursday, 5 July 2007 - 12:26 pm

    We are talking about retraining our doctors in every hospital and clinics in the country. A process that may take many years but very neccessarry, if not it will soon be a place to visit if you wants to committ suicide, just go to the hospital.

  7. #7 by ENDANGERED HORNBILL on Thursday, 5 July 2007 - 12:30 pm

    No one is prepared to be a guinea pig! Are you? Hospitals, private or public, has a system of referral where the Medical Officers refer to senior doctors for assistance in cases of doubt. When junior doctors behave arrogantly like ‘dear-know-alls’, patients are imperilled. This system of referral is much more than a mere work culture; it is a part of the medical treatment structure and must continue because “young doctors (need) some time to mature” and continue the learning process under the watchful eyes of senior specalists.

    No one is prepared to face unnecessary pain, not even the uncalled for needle prick let alone loss of life. Any slack or any forgiving stance that allows for anything less than a rigorous regime of patient examination is intolerable. So, oedipus, your easy attitude ‘as long as there is no loss of life’, in my opinion, is unacceptable. Imagine going under the surgeon’s knife and on a botched-up job, a patient either has to go through longer or more costly rehabilitataive care or worse still, re-surgery – ok, there may be no loss of life but oedipus, how would you feel if you were the patient. It doesn’t matter what race, creed, university or hospital the doctor is from – he/she is surely going to be cursed all the way from the hospital to the morgue or cemetery or rehabiltation centre.

  8. #8 by smeagroo on Thursday, 5 July 2007 - 12:44 pm

    Like we used to learn in school and how our exam papers are being set. If the answer is not A, then it has to be either B, C or D. Just tembaklah! You might get lucky.

  9. #9 by pwcheng on Thursday, 5 July 2007 - 12:56 pm

    My comment is generally in every profession, there are some good ones and some not so good and some are just lousy.
    I had some good experiences and some bad and good experiences with government doctors and dentist. In fact my last visit o he dentist in Hospital University Malaya about about a year ago, I had every praise for the Malay dentist who did a very good job.

  10. #10 by oedipus on Thursday, 5 July 2007 - 1:14 pm

    dear endangered hornbill, if that is the level that patients want, the consultation charges even at general hospital i guess will shoot up tremendously.

    its to cover for civil lawsuits against practitioners for cases of wrong diagnosis. that is why, all private hospital run a complete check on you even if you do not need it just for a simple cough or something!

    i am not saying we can get away with crap consultations but do understand that practitoners are human afterall and sometimes they do get things wrong, esp when they are young into their careers.

  11. #11 by Winston on Thursday, 5 July 2007 - 1:32 pm

    “My comment is generally in every profession, there are some good ones and some not so good and some are just lousy.” – pwcheng

    You may be lucky and also, your medical problems are not serious. Like those who needed major surgery.
    I had read about a case of a woman who underwent major surgery in a public hospital which was botched.
    She then had to undergo another surgery to undo the damage caused by the first surgery.
    However, even then, the second surgeon cannot completely undo the damage caused.
    Just imagine the nightmare if you are that patient!
    It’s still possible that such damage can involve doctors or surgeons in a private hospital but the chances of it occurring are much less.
    The reasons for this is twofold. Firstly, the doctors in private practice do so when they have gained experience. Secondly, when they are in private practice, they do not have to see so many patients a day.
    Those in public hospitals have no choice and their inexperience, coupled with the great number of patients they have to attend to, will cause them to make mistakes. These mistakes are very expensive to the patients.
    In order to rectify the situation, the Health Ministry must allocate ample funds to train doctors, ensure a proper doctor to patient ratio, ensure that they are properly qualified and continually test them for for medical knowledge and efficiency.

  12. #12 by MY VIEW on Thursday, 5 July 2007 - 1:43 pm

    Are our doctors properly trained? Allow me to answer your question with another question. What do you expect from NEP students?

  13. #13 by tidaknama on Thursday, 5 July 2007 - 2:38 pm

    I am a doctor and would like to give my humble opinion on this matter. Yes there are bad apples among the good ones. Just because you have more qualifications does not mean you are a good doctor, it means you are good at taking exams.
    However this is not the point I want to make. A little knowledge is dangerous. The example of the tremor and diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease is one.
    Assuming that just because you look it up on the internet, you can diagnose an essential tremor and Parkinsons is erroneous. Actually there are many other signs of Parkinsons which can aid a spot diagnosis. For example a mask like face, slow shuffling gait with difficulty starting and stopping movement. The tremor itself is a specific 4 Hertz pill rolling tremor.
    I admit that doctors can be wrong and we need to double check our diagnosis. But ask any doctor what irritates us and it is the know it all, most likely a retired teacher(really!) who wants to dictate what medications and referrals he/she should get. Believe me, the best way to get sub standard care is to irritate your already overworked doctor.
    Yes our standards should improve, but remember, all those specialists you see in private, all started off in government service. The lousy specialist you see for RM5 in the GH will be the same specialist you pay a bomb to see in private in a few years.

  14. #14 by dawsheng on Thursday, 5 July 2007 - 3:49 pm

    Some very good reasons given by tidaknama on why doctors are humans too, and hope that the reasons will not be use as an excuse for poor standards in our govt clinics and hospitals, and that something urgent needs to be done so that patients will not be murdered by their doctors, without asking for it. Something must be done by now.

  15. #15 by ahkok1982 on Thursday, 5 July 2007 - 5:42 pm

    Well, it is true that personal diagnosis may not be entirely accurate as we cant really confirm that the information gathered from the net is accurate either. But then again, will anyone disagree if we were to say that the public health care sector in this country is going to the dumps? Everything in the system is breaking down: doctors, ambulances, hospitals falling apart, uncaring receptionist… the list goes on.
    I myself was nearly killed by a doctor who did not release e air bubbles in the syringe before jabbing me. many other ppl have their stories to tell…
    the nation’s “leaders” said that we can be a medical hub. The only real medical service that we can successfully provide now is euthanasia. anyone who wants to die can come visit our public hospitals.

  16. #16 by hang tuah on Thursday, 5 July 2007 - 5:59 pm

    yam seng,

    it cannot be denied that there are many doctors on the street but to find one who really know their job and responsibility in land of boleh is indeed hard. that is one of the reason is one can afford, one will go to the specialist instead of the gov. i am not saying the gov hospital do not have qualified doctor, in fact there is, but only as few as the morning star.

    all this is due to the failure in our education system when admitting students into medical course. if the admission is based on merit i do not think we have so many unqualifed doc in the gov hospital.

    being a doctor is a great profession where u can get satisfaction on treating and saving peoples lifes from suffering and illness. but most of our ” bolehland qualified ” doctor do not see it that way. being doctor for this kind of people is like being a superstar, glamour and something to let people know u have brain. that is where we ended up having so many unqualified doc. “gaya musti mau” is the order of the day.

    sad to said that most of the medical student produced by our uni are from not that highly inteligent student or not even qualifed for a medical course. that is the fact.

    dont u think so ?

    our properly trained doc are all in overseas and the nearest u can find them is in singapore. the land where neglected being praised and honour.

    even minister opt for overseas treatment, do u think our gov hospital doc are properly trained ?

    shake head…..

  17. #17 by Jururawat on Thursday, 5 July 2007 - 8:31 pm

    I am sure we all have our favourite doctor. One who knows what s/he is doing. One who is nice no matter what is happenning. One who is funny all the time. One who is just so loving. One who will go to the ends of the world to help. There should be a system whereby we can ” keep ” our own favourite doctors. Meaning, each time we want to see a doctor, we request for this particular doctor and we must see this one doctor and nobody else. There should be some incentive for the doctors so that they do not mind sacrificing their time for patients who want to be seen by them only. May be overtime allowances. May be some privileges. It is our power to choose which doctor we want. Not the doctor’s authority to say that you are my patient.

    This is not to say the other doctors cannot be trusted. You all have said your mind. In the big hospitals, there are sooo many patients. There are a lot of doctors. From housemen to medical officers to specialists to professors. Don’t forget the medical students. In a day in Kuala Lumpur general hospital, you have four ward rounds. A patient is seen by a houseman first thing in the morning, then seen by a medical officer, then followed by the specialist and in the end the professor. And it does not have to be the same doctor. There are days when a totally different face shows up and you wonder if this is a housemen or a professor. And you wonder if it is a doctor or another medical staff. If you are the patient, I have a strong feeling that you just want to be discharged home. I think you would just want one doctor and s/he does not need to be a so super to treat you. I think as long as you are able to move on your own and get on with your everyday life, that is all that you want.

    A good doctor is a good doctor today because s/he starts from somewhere and that somewhere was being a medical student many years back. So I think we all have to be fair in our judgement of the people who are called to treat the sick. We are who we are today because of who we were yesterday. If somebody gave us a chance or chances, we should give chances to others too. Whichever uni they come from, they all start from somewhere. Don’t think that a M.U. doctor is as super as you make him or her out to be. The uni might lay a good foundation, especially in theoretical knowledge. Most of the practical knowledge is hands on, that is dealing with the patients. I think for a doctor, real hands on practise and personal working experiences are his or her most precious lessons.

  18. #18 by Educator on Thursday, 5 July 2007 - 8:49 pm

    All I ask from a doctor that he/she treats me as he/she treats his/her beloved ones. Nothing more, nothing less. If he/she can’t do it, please resign.

  19. #19 by HJ Angus on Thursday, 5 July 2007 - 8:54 pm

    Perhaps this question can be asked of the Health Minister,
    “How many government sponsored doctors are still refusing to return to Malaysia to serve?”

    The names of these recalcitrants should be published and how long they have been away.

    People who default on small loans are black-listed with CTOS and here we have graduates defaulting on RM1m and still playing footsie with them.

    If those doctors had returned as scheduled, the average skills of the new doctors would have been raised.

  20. #20 by enimsajoan on Thursday, 5 July 2007 - 9:29 pm

    I have been to the Sarawak General Hospital here for about a year already for both the gynae clinic and also the medical clinic for thrombocytopenia (low blood platelets). The specialist who referred me is a very experienced gynecologist but is now working at a private hospital in JB since April.

    A lot of the best specialists (at least gynaes) here are doing the same thing. They have (or are going to) ‘migrate’ to private hospitals who undoubtedly offer a far better pay which i think they do deserve. I do hope there will not be a day where there won’t be a good gynecologist left in the SGH. First and foremost, the pay is way below their proficiency. And then the extreme workload as if they need 48 hours a day! There are even many times when doctors have to forgo their lunch time to finish clerking patients. And, the scarcity of doctors is very real.

    Yes, I do agree than about 70%-80% of the doctors in SGH are in their 20s or early 30s. No doubt some of them can be very professional as well and some can suck big time. Some doctors are very patient and others can be pretty blunt if patients do not obey orders=)

    I was told by a staff nurse that i can choose the doctor that i want to see if he/she is on duty. Never tried that though.

    I’ve heard that SGH is one of the best equipped GHs in the country. I don’t know about that but I believe that having seasoned specialists in every clinic/ward is just as important. No doubt, you can’t expect much with RM5 but hey, quality shouldn’t be compromised either. Also, GH doctors seem to be way too generous with medicine prescriptions. Most of the time my friends and family will freak out when they see the amount of medicine that I bring home from the hospital. Are those medications such as hormone pills that necessary? Should I take it simply because they’re free and just to ‘please the doctors’?

  21. #21 by burn on Thursday, 5 July 2007 - 9:56 pm

    there are good and bad doctors in gomen or privates.

    example 1…
    a very well known VIP specialist in KL private hospital have wrongly diagnose a cousin of mine. after almost a month, it became worst, so the parents went to another private hospital at malacca for second opinion. found out that this well known VIP KL specialist have wrongly diagnose their son sickness. and also were given the wrong type of medicines. after few days, the son was well. funny thing, he, the VIP KL specialist was a well known specialist in KL and also hold a very high post.

    example 2…
    also a very well known VIP specialist in KL private hospital. operation on patient was not professionally done. stiches were badly stich also. had to do second operation at another private hospital after found out that certain part still need to be remove. more over, to get a medical report from the first VIP specialist, i need to pay RM200 for it with resistant. the patient is my wife.

    there are few good doctors and specialists at gomen and university hospital. i was there.

  22. #22 by tune on Thursday, 5 July 2007 - 10:10 pm


    after many cases of gov buildings impair, leak an broke now we are in trouble and truma again….the public health care system.

    we as the tax payers pay billions of ringgit to develop our health system annually but look at what we get….

    the low crediblity of public doctors is nothing but a low education system namely in health care. we simply allow those who are meritcally to get the seat to train as a doctor in local university and at the end of the day we must expect a lousy output…

  23. #23 by wtf2 on Thursday, 5 July 2007 - 10:58 pm

    Let me be very frank and say this:

    I would look at where the doctor graduate from as well as his name for obvious reasons before I decide If i would want him to be my doctor.

    The reasons are obvious – the result of the NEP.

  24. #24 by burn on Friday, 6 July 2007 - 12:06 am

    NEP is another issue.
    not all because of it. some have become good doctors, but not many!

  25. #25 by mantaray on Friday, 6 July 2007 - 12:13 am

    I think much has been said about our education system, everyone knows….the education system affects ALL professions.

    “Jururawat” : Just to clear the issue of “requesting” to see your favourite doctor. The KKM clearly states that a doctor will be ASSIGNED to you. Patients do not have the right to “request” for a particular doctor. Correct me if I’m wrong. Public hospitals are not private hospitals. Nevertheless most if not all public doctors will usually oblige to such request. AND AS IN MOST PUBLIC SERVICES, GOOD DOCTORS WILL BE OVERWHELMED WITH SUCH REQUESTS AND WILL NOT BE REWARDED IN ANYWAY UNTIL HE IS FED UP AND QUITS THE SERVICE. In the end the good doctor gets tired and overwhelmed and becomes a “bad’ doctor.

    The competent gets overworked, and the lazy gets less work! This is the system….

    Tam Yong Yue : Checking out the internet does not make you a doctor. This is exactly the “pseudo doctors” which makes life difficult as rightly pointed by “tidak nama” . And in any case differentiating essential tremor from early Parkinson’s is NOT A LIFE THREATENING SCENARIO and likely may not affect the early treatment at all! Please checkout your internet again regarding treatment of EARLY Parkinson’s and your aunt is in her EIGHTIES….come on, be realistic here. And btw please google on the EXTREMELY LONG LIST OF THE CAUSES OF TREMORS. Who made the diagnosis of essential tremor? You? …Then please apply to be a doctor. The country needs your services.

    Just to clear the air again, even the best or highly qualified doctor might not necessarily be able make a “spot” diagnosis all the time and this does not qualify as negligence or incompetence. Sometimes regular follow ups for new evolving clues may point to the right direction later. BUT MALAYSIAN PUBLIC DEMANDS SPOT DIAGNOSIS ALL THE TIME OR ELSE THE DOCTOR IS LOUSY. And the favorite pastime of Malaysian public is doctor shopping!

    Do not judge the young doctor before knowing all the facts from both sides. Even the best doctors have to start from somewhere.

  26. #26 by burn on Friday, 6 July 2007 - 12:25 am

    as my example written above…
    1st VIP specialist – a malay chap – age between 50 to 65
    2nd VIP specialist – a punjabi women – age between 45 to 60

    another example…
    i was diagnose with denggi fever, when actually i only have rashes. i know i do not have denggi, cause i don’t have the symptoms except for the rashes. for this, the clinic doctor incharge ask me to go to GH. for this, i ask him for a letter so that i can be admitted there. but he was reluctant to issue one. just keep asking me to go straight there. what type of responsibility he have!
    well, i did not go anyway. the next morning, went for second opinion, true enough, it is only rashes.

    3rd clinic doctor – chinese guy – age between 30 to 38

  27. #27 by sheriff singh on Friday, 6 July 2007 - 12:47 am

    Did the doctor qualify from any of the following countries : Bangladesh, Pakistan, Myanmar, Indonesia, Crimea, Ukraine etc etc.

    While there are many good doctors from these countries, the problem is that the government is employing the dubious ones. Also, many of the Universities in these countries are suspect, all out to make money from our desperate wannabe doctors. The medical profession has been compromised, its a business now.

    Also, many panel doctors of government agencies and the private sector have to be bumiputras to meet and satisfy government policies. So if you want to go to a doctor of your choice, it can at times be difficult.

    Medical standards in this country are on the way down, down, down. Thats why there was a recent suggestion for a compulsory qualifying examination for all foreign. Not that it is a good suggestion or that locally produced doctors are much better. Just that the local medical profession is in dire need for a major revamp.

    Misdiagnose? Given wrong medicine? Maybe its time to start sueing.

  28. #28 by Bigjoe on Friday, 6 July 2007 - 7:27 am

    I know of several cases of misdiagnosis by govt hospital doctor. Of that, two was cancer that was diagnosed too late for up to two years. Needless to says, they all suffered/died.

    Complaining about standards and even lodging reports and suing will not make one difference. It will be turned by the politicians into an opportunity to end the subsidy on medical cost, further privatization of healthcare and all the corruption opportunities that goes with it..

  29. #29 by ENDANGERED HORNBILL on Friday, 6 July 2007 - 8:19 am

    Malaysian medical healthcare sucks. Just like the NEP.

  30. #30 by balance on Friday, 6 July 2007 - 9:11 am

    The 2 original letter writers and many in the response section seem to assume that the “young doctor” was necessarily wrong and the letter writers were necessarily right. From the information contained in the original letters, I think this assumption is not justified.
    Patients with Parkinson’s disease do not always have the resting tremor or speech impediment that the letter writers seem to think are requirements for diagnosis. In fact Parkinson’s disease is often missed precisely because doctors expect to find all the “classical” signs and symptoms before diagnosing the disease.
    I don’t know what the young doctor actually did when she was supposed to have “just taken one look” at the patient. Perhaps there were other obvious signs of Parkinson’s disease. Perhaps the patient has been thoroughly assessed and diagnosed previously and the young doctor was just transcribing the information onto a new page of the medical cards.
    I think the letter writers should discuss with the doctor about how the diagnosis was made, rather than making presumptions based on an internet search. A little knowledge is a dangerous thing. The diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease may or may not turn out to be right (and misdiagnoses are not rare, even by the most experienced neurologist, because the signs can be so subtle and variable. Sometimes the correct diagnosis is only made at autopsy, if one is done). In any case, one shouldn’t jump into conclusions based on the scant information and generalizations in the original letters.

  31. #31 by HJ Angus on Friday, 6 July 2007 - 9:52 am

    Programs like the NEP where unqualified people are pushed into professions that are unsuitable only return to cause suffering to everyone.

    And it is usually the poor who bear the brunt of a nation of wholesale incompetents be it in collapsing buildings, flooding cities or exploding bodies.

    Unless the general populace decide that “Enough is enough” and turn up like the good folks in JB the ostriches will keep their heads in the sand and chant the mantra “Semua-lah OK”

  32. #32 by MWong on Friday, 6 July 2007 - 10:13 am

    The impact of Garbage ‘IN’ garbage ‘OUT’?

    Student who scored straight A’s across the board thought she could realise her ambition since childhood in UM. However, her healer dream was crushed like nobody business after receivin’ an offer in geology in return ( WTH?? Medic ?Geology?????) Worse still, her appeals were all in vain and her parents ended up spendin’ a fortune to realise her dream in abroad.

    This is not an isolated case. It is NOT the first and never will be the last. When studyin’ medic becomes so ‘impossible’ ( not because u r not competent enough but other ‘reasons’), students ( and parents) opt to pursue medic study overseas like UK, OZ, Spore, Taiwan, India and Moscow.

    No doubt that there’re still very outstandin’ doctors who qualify locally both in private and GH..but many professional and gifted ones are workin’ in abroad. .dont blame the doctors, coz they’re also victims of NEP..

  33. #33 by Godfather on Friday, 6 July 2007 - 10:30 am

    So we are all agreed that Bodohland is on a downward spiral to oblivion ? Doctors who can’t diagnose, engineers who can’t calculate, lawyers who can prosecute ? All because BN continues to tilt the playing field….

  34. #34 by CoolMike on Friday, 6 July 2007 - 10:31 am

    Root Cause? Once again, those who are not qualify are doing something they are not suppose to do! Period!

    This apply to almost all level of public services: –

    Take for example: Education Minister, Does she or he has the necessary qualification (Dr) in educational field?

    Those who “End up” taking up the Medical Degree are just another monkey in NEP.

    Still dreaming! Wake up Lah!

    But like I always said, if that’s how it got to be, why should I help?
    I just make sure my next generation is better off, definitely no local university or public health care. Just need to work smart for a better future for our next generation.

    The world is getting borderless, Like the EU diplomate has said indirectly “We got to change or else no FDI” or “Malaysia is South African before Nelson Mendela”

    Invest for your next generation, get medical cover. Period!

  35. #35 by Godfather on Friday, 6 July 2007 - 10:34 am

    I mean “lawyers who CAN’T prosecute”

  36. #36 by HJ Angus on Friday, 6 July 2007 - 11:43 am

    Those doctors who accepted scholarships are duty bound to serve the agreed terms of their contract.

    Otherwise they are just showing a total lack of professionalism and integrity.

    Do not sign a contract and then deny and don’t blame that on the NEP!

  37. #37 by MWong on Friday, 6 July 2007 - 12:41 pm

    i mean, //dont blame the doctors for not returnin’ to Msia to work..coz they havent been given a fair chance to study medic at home//..

  38. #38 by Kingkong on Friday, 6 July 2007 - 1:45 pm

    It is not just in the medical field. The type of mediocre society that we have created only mediocre close to incompetence people are filled up in all levels of job including the prime minster himself. TDM just couldn’t even select any good successor among the nation of the blind. TDM really had no choice, if the successor is not a homosexual, then he appears to be an international playboy or he is just a sleeping ugly. See how Singapore did for the preparation of their competent successors.

    In analogy, we originally have good hands and good legs, but the so called abused NEP had crippled the people and instead offered crutches to substitute the normal walking. How could we move correctly or fast?

    Good people will not want to mix with rotten people scared that they may be rotten in the end. That is true especially for graduates of any discipline. That is a very serious setback for the development of human capital. A correctly trained overseas doctor would like to stay back or look for some place where he could get a proper mentor to get a correct training. In our current environment of the blind leading the bind, it is almost like nailing a coffin to your own career if one has to come back.

    For the educational fund defaulters, our incompetent administrators can’t even devise an effective system to enforce those overseas scholarship holders to come back to serve the country. On the contrary, look at Singapore, they can even offer the scholarships to foreigners and yet able to enforce them to serve their government upon completion of their studies. You just can’t talk about professionalism and integrity which anyway our government itself does not have much either.

    When mediocre people occupy most of the positions, they tend to form an opinion to object those good ones who try to improve. The common phrase is “Don’t raise the standard!”. The so-called good money attracts good money and the bad money attracts bad money takes the effect.

    When very VIPs got sick, the first place they rush to is the hospital overseas, and the nearest one is Singapore, followed by US, London or Perth. We can see how confident we have on our medical support, and so the doctors.

    It is indeed very sad to see that whilst Singapore is developing high tech treatment, stem cell treatment for various types of cancer and yet we still can’t get our fundamental medical treatment from our own medical facility. Perhaps life is cheap in Malaysia. It is true the way Altantuya was killed, and it is only the tip of the iceberg.

  39. #39 by gana on Friday, 6 July 2007 - 2:55 pm

    to date still there is a big number in actual case that the medical negligence occured in govt. hospital but cover up made everything bolehlaqnd people became always boleh with the thier upper six mentality…

  40. #40 by tidaknama on Friday, 6 July 2007 - 3:16 pm

    “The competent gets overworked, and the lazy gets less work! This is the system….”
    I agree with this statement entirely. Anyway regarding pay, do you know that the starting pay as a houseman (1st year) was RM1700 a month a few years ago? At least now it is about rm2500. When we do calls, we were paid rm20 a night. At least the pay has increased slightly, but as a specialist in the government hospital with call claims perhap you will earn RM6000, in private you would earn at least double.
    But some good doctors stay, because they really are dedicated. But over time it is not enough. Imagine will you stay if suddenly the government asks you to uproot your family and go to Kelantan or Sabah? Or if others are promoted or get the transfer they want because they have “connections” or can bodek the boss?
    Doctors are only human, mistakes and all.

  41. #41 by Nightman01 on Friday, 6 July 2007 - 4:27 pm

    Genarally, some Doctor is good but majority of them is really screw-up. I just go thru one painful issue, whereby my wife passed away due to doctor unable detect the sick or issue. After 5 hrs admitted then only 1 of Doctor at Kepala Batas Hosipital suspected blood bung in the brain.
    After confirmation by used CT scan (after 5 hrs from admitted time), they failed send my wife to Penang GH for operation purpose due to ambulan maintainance and ambulan “out of pertol” issue. Overall I can make conslusion, poor handling issue from Kepala Batal gov. Hospital + Doctor. My confidence level is totally ZERO to Gov Hospitals.

    Details, pls go through below news (about my wife issue) from Health Ministry.

    TheStar June 29th reported The Health Ministry has denied that a woman died at the Penang Hospital in October last year due to a delay in sending her to the hospital because the ambulance was out of petrol.

    The Kepala Batas Hospital had adequate facilities to treat Yusnita Abas who died from a brain aneurysm, minister Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek said.

    He said based on a study, the prognosis for a patient who suffers severe bleeding due to a broken blood vessel was never good.

    “About 30% of patients will die before they arrive at the hospital,” he told Lim Kit Siang (DAP – Ipoh Timur) in a written reply.

    It was reported that Yusnita’s husband claimed that the hospital had taken five hours to treat her.

    Dr Chua said among the measures being taken to improve ambulance services was to introduce a new ambulance driving training module, in which 5,000 ambulance drivers will be trained.

    I am husband of above Yusnita Abas. My wife death due to provide an efficient ambulence service” from Kepala Batas Hospital.

    Based on above news, The Health Ministry has denied that my wife died at the Penang Hospital in October last year due to a delay in sending her to the hospital because the ambulance was out of petrol. So, what is actual root cause???. It’s due to other issue involve with Drivers disiplince issue. We need push them to share actual root cause.

    Help Needed from Uncle Lim Kit Siang to press them on root cause of that incident. We need to ensure it not repaet again to other people in future.


  42. #42 by justice_fighter on Friday, 6 July 2007 - 9:08 pm

    The majority of students nowadays studying medicine simply because they want to be wealthy. Honestly speaking, how many of them are genuinely interested to save people’s lives? The world is ‘no money no talk’…

  43. #43 by HJ Angus on Friday, 6 July 2007 - 9:33 pm

    I remember the first day at IMU for students, they told the audience,
    “If you think you can make lots of money in medicine, please forget about it!”

    Maybe the money is being made by the big medical groups while some ordinary doctors really have to struggle.

    My daughter completed her studies in Canada and will complete her housemanship next year. Also with a very busy schedule but she likes it there.

    She will start her career there next year and will get an interesting signing-up package. Most students overseas take massive loans for med school and some do struggle financially.

  44. #44 by Kingkong on Saturday, 7 July 2007 - 11:28 am

    “The majority of students nowadays studying medicine simply because they want to be wealthy. Honestly speaking, how many of them are genuinely interested to save people’s lives? The world is ‘no money no talk’” – justice_fighter Says

    As you can see what mentioned by Dr tidaknama: With RM 2500 to 6000 a month, how rich can you be? It is incorrect to say people study medicine because of the wealth. Unless you love to care for people, seeing and being with sick people can be very demoralizing.

    However, health care career is always in demand everywhere in the world, and it is easier for a young kid to secure a job easily and could move from that point. On top of that in the first world country, doctors are usually best paid people. For a doctor to be wealthy, he needs to be very good and famous. But if he is really that good, he deserves it anyway.

    For those who think of wealth, it is better to do something like commerce or finance subjects.

    Medicine is nowadays a technology, and the total medical system has to wok well and not just doctors alone. In our government hospitals, how often do we hear that the ambulance runs out of petrol and could not send the patient on time? How often do we hear that the diagnosing machines broke down, out of maintenance and could not be utilized on time? Or we have the equipments but no one know how to use it? With all the equipments fixed up, doctors are not able to make decision of how to go further, the list goes on! Life and death is separated by a thin sheet of paper, and speed is very important and the total system has to cater for that.

    Actually, it boils down to management again which is a pain in the arse of our bolehland and it is a team work and unfortunately doctors are the easy targets to get the blame.

  45. #45 by ashen lady on Saturday, 7 July 2007 - 11:47 am

    Ok Folks, i agree with mantaray’s comments 100%.

    Now, its not about race, religion or which uni the doc went to. It’s all about attitude. It’s as simple as that. I’m a doc and i agree with what ‘Educator’ said ” All I ask from a doctor that he/she treats me as he/she treats his/her beloved ones. Nothing more, nothing less”.
    That’s attitude.You may not know everything, but you must know how to be safe doctor.

    There are black sheep in EVERY profession. I know docs that i won’t even trust my pets with.

    Next, ppl expect doctors to be like Gods just because lives are being dealt here. Ppl should have realistic expectations.

    Lastly, a little knowledge is indeed dangerous. You cannot become a doc overnight by ‘googling’ or by watching ER, House MD or that @#$% Grey’s Anatomy.

  46. #46 by paix on Saturday, 7 July 2007 - 1:30 pm

    A doctor can bury his mistakes but an architect can only advise his client to plant vines – Frank Lloyd Wright

  47. #47 by shortie kiasu on Saturday, 7 July 2007 - 4:45 pm

    This is the result of umpteen years of attempts and policies created by the Malays dominated government to create more Malay medical doctors, who do not even speak English, in the country. The Malays did not realize that one day they themselves will be treated by their half-baked and half-cooked medical doctors in their government hospitals. They will have to face the consequence of their selfish and short-sightedness policies just because they want to put incompetent students into medical schools. No place for the bright and intelligent, because these bright sparks are going to cause the medical standards to rise too high to level that those mediocre Malay students cannot reach and will all flop in their medical course.


  48. #48 by dental gp on Saturday, 7 July 2007 - 7:41 pm

    there are much that can be done to improve the govt. healthcare service. but the main topic is not about the flaws of the service, it’s the the little information that the retired teacher had got himself from the internet.

    google could not replace medical school. period.

    Parkinson’s disease would just be a differential diagnosis, prior to referral to a specialist or senior consultant.

    without clinical examination and evidence which could only a trained medical practitioner provide, how would google determine it is not PD?

    the point is, if you are unsure dear teacher, ask the good young doctor.

    mr. shortie kiasu, after 50 years you still have prejudice. i’ve seen lots of chinese and indians as well who do not speak English or even Malay (sorry, bahasa Malaysia). poor you.

    it is not about race, religion and what not.

    the root cause is the attitude of all.


  49. #49 by Kingkong on Sunday, 8 July 2007 - 10:22 am

    English is an important and advantaged tool in the pursuit of knowledge. But it does not mean that people who use their mother tongue only cannot make good doctors. If that is not true, then how do you explain there are good doctors who do not speak English or very little English at all in Japan, Korea, China or Russia?

    It is the attitude in the pursuit of knowledge, finding the truth, and getting correct method of working that counts.

    The road to the training of a doctor is very long; six year medical school, a couple of years in houseman ship, and another five six years for specialization plus many tests and examinations to determine success and failure. One needs a lot of perseverance and love for the subject. It is not easy to produce a qualified doctor.

  50. #50 by shaolin on Monday, 9 July 2007 - 10:31 am

    Government MUST produce Doctors with QUALITY, NOT QUANTITY
    as emphasized in NEP!! This unhealthy phenomenon is seen in Every
    Field of Professions!!
    So it is NOTHING NEW and be AMAZED when
    SOMEONE die in Sudden Death, Illness – UNKNOWN!!

  51. #51 by HJ Angus on Monday, 9 July 2007 - 4:32 pm

    Those who can do some simple research on the NEt can also keep themselves informed on medicine or treatments proposed by a doctor or specialist.

    My wife saw a specialist with a womb problem and the quick remedy was , “You already have 4 children, do not want any more and so I suggest your womb be removed.”

    That was more than 10 years ago. That suggestion prompted some serious research and my wife did go for treatment but without the removal of her womb.

    So patients if the treatment is very drastic,do seek a second opinion or do some research.

  52. #52 by paix on Thursday, 12 July 2007 - 11:43 am

    Guess what showed up in Reuters’ news wire:

    The above showed up in Yahoo’s Odd News. Now the international community knows the competentcy and professionalism of the health “professionals” in Bodohland. Any foreign tourist who is stupid to want to visit will pray that they don’t get sick and have to be warded in one of the local govt hospitals.

    Bodohland, you are the laughingstock of the world! hehehehehe :-)

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