Be Careful of What You Snap (and share)

9:56 AM

We've been attacked by conspiracy theorists. They say we are the Illuminati's agents of destruction.

We've been attacked by pro (unassisted) home birth. They say we poison the mothers with chemicals and destroy their bodies.

We've blamed by anti-vaxxers to be the cause of autism.

We've been punished and labelled useless, heartless doctors for not giving out MCs for pro-MC seekers.

When a picture of a doctor performing a procedure on a female patient went online, the medical fraternity was at the center of attention for all the wrong reasons. Questions regarding a patient's modesty, privacy and confidentiality became the talk of the nation. According to some initial reports the doctor involved was attending to a case of umbilical cord prolapse. She had to manually use her fingers to prevent the umbilical cord from getting prolapsed before a Cesarean section is performed. She acted according to her clinical judgement and it should be commended.

However, the act of taking a picture while performing a procedure was really unprofessional. Furthermore, the patient's private parts was apparently visible in the initial photos (the one being circulated on the internet was partially censored). I can't figure out what can be learned from that picture that warrants it to be shared. People usually snap and share pictures of wounds, skin lesions or X ray films for references or to be discussed with professional colleagues. But I can't think of any justification for this photo to be taken in the first place. There is a clear breach of privacy, regardless whether the patient gave her consent or not. The doctor should not have agreed for anyone to take her photo in that situation.

It is not the best time for doctors to be making this kind of mistakes now. It will effect how future patient's will perceive doctors.

"Tak nak la pergi hospital. Nanti doktor tangkap gambar bukan bukan."

" I don't trust doctors anymore. They NEVER take our modesty and privacy into consideration."

"Hah, tu la. Nak lagi pergi hospital. Upah je saya untuk jaga awak bersalin kat rumah."

These are the kind of things the public will say. There is already a growing distrust among the public towards the medical fraternity. This will only worsen the fragile bond.

For now, let's leave this case to the authorities to investigate. This incident should serve as a reminder to ALL doctors and medical staff to stay focused on your job.

  • Leave your phones for a while. 
  • Try and not to snap photos while on the job.
  • Before sharing anything on Whatsapp and social media, think first whether it is appropriate or necessary to be shared.

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