Saturday, June 25, 2005

Malaysia-A Nation of Doctors?

I'm surprised! No or fewer complaints of perfect As students failing to secure a place for medicine in local public universities? Do we have to thank the pseudo-meritocracy system which is practised now? Check out these figures:


It makes me think back perhaps I was too overly-ambitious or the Chinese say 'You don't have that big head, don't wear that big hat' for applying for medicine with just merely few As back 5 years ago; and still persistantly (well, not persistant as I told myself to move on with life) during the first year of my undergraduate studies, which I almost did this.

I believe the coverage on medical education in Malaysia has not been given that much of emphasis compared to any parts of the world. Our society still could not give up the portrayal of a doctor as 'profession with a halo on the head and could earn big bucks.' That's probably my own perception as I had that too when I applied for medicine as explained earlier. Many bright students think that their much effort and brains would go to waste if they do not join the medical profession, moreover to improve their quality of life. The quality of life could be health of their personal acquantaince or financial gains. Oh...come on...who would not be influenced by the good looks, fame and fortune of those medical series like 'Scrubs', 'ER', 'Chicago Hope', 'Healing Hands'...etc...I too was influenced by that.

With so much emphasis on the medical education and believing that all the doctors which serve us are heavily loaded with brains, we could well be the healthiest nation in the world in this 'nation of doctors'. Instead, we are still one of the most obesed nations in the world, and we ranked number one in the world when it comes to diabetes as the cause of kidney failure by the US Renal Data Registry.

I empathise with those students with a Biology background scoring perfect or less than perfect results who opted to choose doctor as a profession. Or perhaps their choice was not to be a doctor but to have some profession which can continue the expansion of their intellectual capabilities, continung their legacy. Or some at the same time wants to sincerely help to improve the quality of life (health) of mankind. But in my personal opinion, being a doctor is not just the only option out there (but frankly, it is a hard fact that it seemed to be for those scoring perfect results and interested in the bioscience field).

I hope that our public universities could have open days transparently (seemed impossible) to see what other courses options are there if those who are interested in the bioscience field. Many so-called 'career talks' organised by private universities in education expos mainly focused on the medicine and biotechnology.

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