How Doctors Abuse The Hippocratic Oath, June 18, 2012

Issues arising from Sunday, June 3, 2012 Dana plane crash in a densely populated area of Lagos in which all the 153 persons on board died, apart from scores of residents of the area where the ugly incident happened, dominated the media for the better part of last week. We attempted in this edition to look beyond the ill-fated Dana Air just as the federal government has suspended the operating licence of the airline pending the outcome of the ongoing investigation of the crash.
But another matter bothering on human lives and the way Nigerian professionals handle human lives vis-à-vis the fulfillment of the oath taken in their professional callings, attracted our focus this week as we x-rayed the ‘lip-service’ medical practitioners pay to the Hippocratic Oath which they swear to.  For instance, the oath says, first, “the health of my patient shall be my first consideration” and secondly that “I will maintain the utmost respect for human life,” but the incessant strike actions by medical doctors negates this. 
Even the way they attend to patients in times of need calls to question what they stand to defend in the said oath. Should it continue to be so?  What is the way out? Should the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria, MDCN, and government not take cogent steps to address this ‘perceived’ derailment as it affect human lives? This is our cover story this week, It is a must read! 

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