"We have the very best sick-care system in the world, we just don't have a health-care system" Joycelyn Elders, US Surgeon General, 1993-1994
Former Surgeon General Joycelyn Elders was perhaps the first one to challenge the ethics of the prevalent sickcare system, and the result was she was fired within months. What she voiced was very inconvenient to the Sickcare industry, and obviously the power prevailed over ethics.
How wrong Leo Tolstoy was when he said “wrong does not cease to be wrong because the majority share in it”, and how down-to-earth Hitler was when he said, “success is the sole earthly judge of right and wrong.” Success indeed blinds us to anything that conflicts with success, dominance or power. Wrong indeed ceases to be wrong when it is at loggerheads with power. In the struggle for existence we do only what is convenient and definitely not what’s right but inconvenient.
Even the ethics of primary health care is blinded with the rule of convenience, and that’s the principle reason it has miserably failed during its entire 35 years of existence. As much as we may believe our practice of medicine today is ethical and evidence based, it is not. As much as we may believe that our healthcare system maintains health of our communities, it does not. The system first lets us get sick, nurtures the sickness and maintains a level of sickness that feeds the dollar-driven industry.
“Let “Rx Zero” be the new oath of every sickcare practitioner if we need to transform sickcare back to healthcare. Raheman, F. J Epidemiol Community Health 2010; 64:477