Celebrating the legacy: A Talk with the docs on National Doctor's Day

  • Avleen Kaur, Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
  • Updated: Jul 01, 2015 16:19 IST

Bollywood superstar Amitabh Bachchan’s son Abhishek Bachchan became an actor. Former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi’s sons Rajiv Gandhi and Sanjay Gandhi and grandsons Rahul Gandhi and Varun Gandhi became politicians. A legacy of fame and power attracted children from these families to follow in their parents’ and grandparents’ footsteps.

But think of an idol family with four generations of doctors continuing the legacy and inspiring many.
HT spoke to Dr Andesh Kang, now a senior medical officer and gynaecologist at Civil Hospital, Phase 6, SAS Nagar, who is married to Dr Rajbir Singh Kang, a general physician from Phase 3.
Dr Rajbir’s father Dr Malvinder Kang was the director of the health department of Punjab (retired in 1985) and grandfather Dr Sarwan Singh was an army doctor.

Interestingly, Dr Rajbir Singh’s mother Bhajan Kaur was the first lady doctor of Ferozepur. Dr Manraj Singh Kang, the youngest doctor in the family and son to Rajbir and Andesh, serves as a radiation oncologist at Sri Rammurti Smarak Institute of Medical Sciences (SRMS) in Bareilly.“Our sector is much more organised than before because of technological advancement. We can consult other doctors within minutes and find solutions. Better drugs and awareness among public also helps us diagnose the disease at an early stage and come up with a better cure,” says Dr Andesh.

Talking about the advent of new branches in medicine, she added, “Earlier, there were more general physicians, but now the field is divided into specialised streams. New lifestyle diseases have given birth to other branches of medicine. Be it diet and wellness or nuclear medicine, the scope for research is opening doors for more potential doctors.”There was a time when the doctor’s word was the last word for patients.
Talking about this, Dr Andesh says, “Patients have become more aware and ask for a lot more information. Patients are dear to us. The memory of a patient’s death in our hands stays forever.

How’s your life? Wait, do you have one?The million dollar question.Do doctors have a life outside hospital?
Dr Andesh laughs and says, “We do get holidays and are paid well now. The salaries have increased but so has the price index.”
So what’s the most difficult part? Why do students dread and people in general worship this profession?
“Well, it definitely is a huge responsibility and to be able to carry that responsibility, you need immense knowledge which comes with years of study. We deal with the most precious thing on earth – a human life,” she adds.

We always wonder whether it is easy for a doctor to overcome stress in daily life.
Young Dr Manraj says, “Initially, it’s difficult being objective, but slowly we get used to it. Once we enter the operation theatre, we forget all our problems and concentrate on the task at hand. Also, we need to take care of patients as well as their relatives. We’re the ones who need to be strong.”

Dr Andesh and her husband Dr Rajbir never put pressure on their son to become a doctor but he chose to continue the legacy. “I was inspired by my grandfather. Watching him treat patients for free attracted me towards the profession. Many fields offer money, but this one gives me inner satisfaction.”

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