In the wake of the persistent strikes by the Ghana Medical Association (GMA), there’s a growing public perception that doctors are selfish and insensitive.
Some members of the public even think doctors go on strike just to demand pay rise.
But one doctor who works at a government hospital and who pleaded anonymity, told Joy News’ Francisca Kakra Forson the perception about doctors was awfully wrong.
He said he feels very bad whenever he hears people say that doctors are uncompassionate and callous.
“It is very painful [to hear people talk like this],” he said, because doctors ‘work their backs off’ just to take care of their patients.
He described as ‘very wrong’ perceptions that strikes by doctors is all about pay increase. Sometimes, he explained, they strike over unresolved issues related to their salaries which have lingered for long.
He said it was therefore not true that doctors lay down their tools just to make more money.
The doctor added that even when they go on strike, doctors “do not totally shut down their services” and that measures are put in place to care for patients.
He insisted that deaths that occur during periods when doctors are on strike cannot be blamed on the strike.
“...If somebody is going to die, he will die. We are not gods, we are human beings, we just have a little bit extra knowledge...”
He said the manner in which Ghanaians criticize and sometimes malign doctors make them feel unappreciated.
“Sometimes you just get frustrated with the system and you think it’s easier and better if you get out...”