Health literacy through awareness programmes should be our priority in India: Dr Harmeet Singh-thip

Dr Harmeet Singh, MD, PhD, MEM, is an experienced emergency medicine specialist. He currently works at Fortis Healthcare, New Delhi as Senior Consultant and Head of Emergency and Trauma.

What is the best thing you enjoy about treating patients?

It is very rewarding to be able to save a patient or help them get better.

When is a patient easy to treat?

Cooperative patients are easy to treat. Patients should be transparent with their doctors.

When is a patient difficult to treat?

Lack of transparency can create miscommunication, which can make our job difficult.

How helpful is it to the treatment course, if the patient is knowledgeable about the treatment procedure, benefits, risks etc.?

It’s easy to explain about the condition to a patient if they have some prior knowledge about it.

How can a patient improve their knowledge about the treatment procedure?

Awareness programmes should be initiated in India. Literature and social media can play a great role. Basic awareness and training programs should be started. Public needs to have interest in learning and reading about health like it has for entertainment and others.

How medical misinformation act as a problem in the overall treatment procedure?

Medical misinformation is a serious concern. The half-baked knowledge and information that people generally get from the internet and other sources tend to result in adverse outcomes. Half knowledge about anything can be a problem, but doctors should understand and be calm to counsel the patient with facts.

A few advice that you always give to your patients…

Eat healthy, walk healthy (exercise), adequate liquids and fibers, and minimum 7-8 hours sleep.

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