Day 33

Who is responsible?

As a medical doctor practising anaesthesia, I know for sure that if a fit and healthy 20 year old passed away under my care for any reason, some very serious questions would be asked and I would be ‘responsible’ in one way or another. In hospital medicine extreme emphasis is put on ‘Patient Safety’ – lots of time and money is spent on it and not one but many departments are set up to ensure this safety, such as Clinical Governance and Simulation training to name just a couple.

How does this transfer to Community medicine? Of course, he was an adult, so he must be responsible. When does the illness take over the responsibility? Which health practitioners can we apportion responsibility to – the General Practitioner or Psychiatric services? Or is it the training of GPs – the young ones get posted in Psychiatry for 4 months out of 3 years of their training. The older ones have hardly had any training in Psychiatry and 25% of their patients present with Mental Health issues. How come I trained for 7 years to be an Anaesthetist and GP training is 3 years long? Is it because of the Government that introduced cuts in the NHS spending promising that the front line staff would not be affected but it turned out that they were lying? Why do we need so many more people with clip-boards than the ones actually doing the work?

How about the railway staff and services? There are minimal staff at stations now and their main concern is collection of revenue. My son was at the station for 2 hours before he put himself on the rails. How come no one noticed? What about the CCTVs? He was wearing a hoody when he was there. Was it deliberate because he knew that no one would mess with him if he did that? Did no one on the station think why he was there for so long – staff or passenger? Is this the degree of disconnection between us as people belonging to the same community?

Who is responsible?

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