“Doctors can work more efficiently in corruption-free atmospher”—Dr Vinay Aggarwal
Dr Vinay Aggarwal, chairman of Pushpanjali Healthcare and vice-chairman of Delhi Medical Council, contributed to numerous welfare projects like Physicians’ Training Initiative (Bill Clinton Foundation) for greater social uplift with efficient leadership skills. He also directed discernible campaigns on vector-borne diseases, family planning, save the girl child etc. He authored various well-known books including Manual of Medical Emergencies, Textbook of Family Medicine, Malaria and its Management. In an interview to Correspondent Sonia Chawla, Dr Aggarwal talked on various issues. Excerpts:
After the monsoon, dengue spreads like wildfire. So what precautionary steps should be taken?
Dengue is a vector-born disease like chikungunya and malaria. All these illnesses have incubation period and preventable but our hygiene, community procedure, community knowledge regarding health is highly questionable, as we allow mosquitoes to breed. Naturally, then they will bite us. This time, however, dengue has spread in milder form. To prevent the spread of dengue fever, we must first prevent the breeding of its vector, the Aedes mosquito. One can get rid of the Aedes mosquito by frequently checking and removing the stagnant water in one’s premises. Medicines or kerosene oil must be sprayed in the stagnant water to eradicate the mosquitoes. One should also cover one’s whole body to prevent the mosquito bite.
What are the symptoms of dengue?
The principal symptoms of dengue are high fever, severe headache, backache, joint pains, nausea and vomiting, eye pain and rashes. In severe cases, consult doctor as soon as possible and don’t panic. But the role of prevention is better than cure. Government departments concerned and hospitals should come forward to impart the valuable information to the general public.
Are the government and hospitals capable enough to deal with the critical situation of diseases like dengue, typhoid etc?
Yes, they are capable enough to prevent these diseases but they don’t utilise their capabilities properly. Budget is allocated in sufficient proportion, but unfortunately it is left unutilised. So in my view, we can do efficiently only by working in a corruption-free atmosphere.
It is reported that government provides wrong number on dengue sufferers. Is it true?
I can say that a substantial number of deaths have occurred, which have not been reported by the government because of lack of a proper mechanism. Hospitals and healthcare centres do not provide the correct number of cases—the main reason being red-tapism.
Recently, news was flashed on TV channels that a doctor raped a girl, who was admitted in ICU at Mumbai. Does it not raise a question on the ethics of the doctor fraternity?
It’s a crime committed by an individual. And it can happen in any sector and for which the entire sector should not be held responsible. However, such incidents should be stopped by vigilant management and the guilty should be awarded the severest punishment.
Being the chairman of the Pushpanjali Healthcare, what are the unique features of Pushpanjali Hospital?
It is the first Indian hospital which is environment-friendly, as it works on CNG generators and is a mercury-free hospital. Employment opportunities are given to blind persons. We also undertake many programmes for the uplift of community like running free dispensaries and crèches. Pushpanjali golden year programme for old-aged persons, Homecare programme, Pushpanjali neighbourhood healthcare initiative programme are other milestone in which various schemes are chalked out to help the old and needy people. Recently, we conducted camps on laparoscopy and gyno-surgery, in which we did 12 surgeries successfully. Community library in the hospital is another unique feature.
What is your message to the young doctors?
There is no substitute for hard work, sincerity and honesty.