Thursday, 22 October 2015

Free Health Care - Unbelievable for Some.

This apps in smart phones makes it easier and cheaper to talk with friends and relatives abroad and I was talking with one of my friend who is in one of the hospitals outside country as sick attendant; the conversation with him opened my eyes with his experiences there, regarding the free health care services out here in Bhutan.

I think 'Lha gi yul' kingdom of gods does not constitute of just having better roads, excellent water supply, uninterrupted power supply and all the modern amenities in place. There is something intangible and more important that cannot be measured or explained and whose presence cannot be felt but it's absence is felt by people who goes abroad.

Our system is allegedly flawed. Everyone is not equal, we respect the elders and people in higher jobs. While walking on the footpath people would go out of the foot path when they see a dasho or rimpoche/lam approaching from the opposite direction even when the path could accommodate passage to two people at the same time. This may be considered ridiculous by some and it needs to be changed, so visualize a young person almost dashing your tsawai lam or your boss on the foot path.  The very flawed things is what is making us unique. We can never get detached from parents and relatives or ignore them should they suffer.

My friend told me that we do not realize the immense benefits of free health care, he was awed by the long queue on the registration counter to pay to get checked only after paying. Some very sick people were seen collapsing in the queue (better because the queue would be shorter by one person) and no one bothering about that. The cost of the tablets that needs to be bought and the needles and all those pipes that should be brought by the patient so as to provide intravenous injection, humbled my friend. Unless all the accessories are brought and service charges paid for, the patient can, for all they care, die. Where is the ethics and the human touch that we have back home? When he told that in Bhutan all these and other medicines are provided free of cost, they looked at him as if he was narrating a fairy tale.

Seeing all this my friend urged me to give at least hundred bucks as donation whenever I visit hospital. It evoked a pang of guilt in me for I have not donated and participated in the recent health walk. I have taken free medical service as my right because I have seen it provided for so long a time without realizing the pains and the burdens on our Royal Government's exchequer.

It is not about taking credit or giving credit but our visionary monarch knew the importance of free health care and of course free education and provided it for free not even once mentioning about it being given like that. But all credit goes to them for not copy pasting a system from giant neighbors which could have easily influenced a not so smart leaders.

It only when the fish is taken out of the water, it realizes the importance of water as the saying goes. When we go a bit far and get treated like a means to extract money from, despite being sick and needs all the attention and medical expertise, that is the time we miss our doctors, nurses and other medical faculties for their kind works and the Royal Government for paying them to serve us free of cost.

(Thanks Niznet for opening our eyes, please have patience and may your patient get well soon)