It’s difficult to be a doctor in India. 

One would argue it is difficult to be anyone in India, looking at the way things have panned out this year. But, as professionals, doctors have suffered the most since the beginning of the pandemic, which is saying something because they were not exactly flourishing even before 2020.

Even before the pandemic, they were overworked and underpaid and they were mistreated and sidelined. For instance, the picture below is that of the Members of the Resident Doctors Association, who were protesting against an attack on an AIIMS Bhopal medic in 2019.

Outlook India

After the pandemic, things just became worse. So, on the National Doctor’s Day, I feel like we need to apologise to our medics before celebrating them.

We need to apologise to them for the salaries they never got, despite working so hard to serve the nation.

We need to apologise to them for the harassment they face for merely trying to save lives.

We need to apologise to them for the incorrect accusations of negligence.

We need to apologise to them for the lack of security they require so badly. The security they ideally shouldn’t need.

We need to apologise to them on behalf of our uninformed leaders because the uninformed leaders never will.

We need to apologise to them for the lack of public support.

And finally, we need to apologise for forgetting, time and again, that the doctors also have families and their family members have died due to the same disease they are curing in the hospitals.

We need to apologise to the sons and daughters who came back to work hours after cremating their parents.

After all this, and if we can ever repay the moral debt on our heads, maybe we will celebrate our doctors. Till then, our heads hang in shame.