Quackery is a derogatory term used to describe the promotion of unproven or fraudulent medical practices. Quack is a person who practises quackery and can be described as a “fraudulent or ignorant pretender to medical skill” or “a person who pretends, professionally or publicly, to have skill, knowledge, qualifications he or she does not possess(source:wikipedia).
Quackery has been around for long but with dissemination of medicinal facts and secrets of medicine through various forms of media, had lead to a huge leap in the increase in number of quacks in our system.
Who becomes a quack?
1. Its been observe red that men from villages come to city to work as assistants to doctors in clinics and hospitals. After they work for some time, they tend to believe that they know everything and start their own clinics in their respective villages wherein, besides from what they have learnt , they start administering medication for other common problems of villagers but what they donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t realize is the side effects that the treatment may be causing. A medicine given by them might not help the patient but instead lead to many other health problems.
2. Medical aspirants who could not get into the profession due to some reason-be it lack of funds or failing to excel in the exam, cant get over that urge to be in the profession. Most of them are educated and tech savy. They fully exploit the easy availability of medicinal facts over the Internet and embrace the profession of quackery with open arms.
3. Sometimes people suffering from low professional esteem and boredom also resort to quackery.
Why is quackery acceptable in society?
1. People who practise quackery may do so to take advantage of the patientÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s ignorance about conventional medical treatments versus alternative treatments provided by them.
2. In comparison to a conventional medical practitioner, a quack is bound to be more affectionate and caring towards the patient hence preferred.
3. Common problems like cough and cold improve themselves with time. An ignorant patient may associate the usage of alternative treatments with recovering, when recovery was inevitable.
4. Many people, for various reasons including the risk of side effects, have a distrust of conventional medicines sometimes due to previous bad experiences.
5. Many medicines can have side effects, and many people are afraid about and its consequences, so they may opt to shy away from the conventional methods of treatment. Instead, they come to the quacks who claim to treat them without any surgery and at much lower cost.
6. Cost: There are people who simply cannot afford paying hefty consultation fee, expensive tests for diagnosis, and costly medicines and look out for a cheaper alternative. Quacks dispense treatment at a much lower cost.
7. People with a serious or terminal disease, or who have been told by their practitioner that their condition is “untreatableÃ¢â‚¬Â, or the oneÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s suffering from chronic or incurable diseases, often knock the doors of quacks with the hope of finding a cure.
8. Some practitioners, fully aware of the ineffectiveness of their medicine, may intentionally produce fraudulent scientific studies and medical test results, thereby confusing any potential consumers as to the effectiveness of the medical treatment.
Thus we find that the main reason for presence of quacks in the society is the inability of people to pay for the costly medicines,tests and consultation fee of the doctor. In order to do something about it, the qualified medical professionals should come forward and help by lowering down their fees so that it becomes affordable by the common man and if possible providing treatment free of cost hence doing a service to humanity.
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