Cooperation not competition

The past two decades have seen increased development in the field of medicine. With venturing years and at the end of the second decade, medical profession today stands as one of the most significant, respectful and promising professions with the hopes of common citizens at its epicentre. As a common man, the belief in longevity is more based on faith.

A doctor is a defined personality who is deemed successful when the patients put their faith in his profession and hence every white apron wearer stands as a brother in the profession as often the white apron often becomes the unified symbol for trust. In the dilematic world of medical profession, one of the debatable issues is sharing of the reputation. There has always been a fight or confusion among the practitioners about who is more reputed within the profession.

There has been a competition among the various branches of the profession to establish their authority over the faith and proclaim themselves as king of the profession. The rift has been severe between the degrees of MBBS, BDS and BPT these are the branches of the health care related to medical, dental and physiotherapist.

The other branches like AYUSH, Ayurvedic, Yoga, Unani, Siddha and Homeopathy also give a tough fight in this competition but judgement is made based on the severity of cases in the respective fields, for example, where ⁷the medical professionals deal with more life-threatening cases like cardiac surgeries and internal organ haemorrhages, the dental surgeons deal with lesser complications based on the cases. The dental speciality includes craniofacial trauma which is equally important and life threatening.

The medical profession is a vast profession which deal with various branches of medicine such as pathologies, surgeries cardiovascular trauma, gastro-intestinal disorders, respiratory syndromes, immunodeficiency diseases, labour and maternal health, neurosurgical complications, etc., hence the risk of  losing the patient permanently is more in the ratio aspect.

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This field not only demands immense knowledge but also demands a sharp polishing of the skills to be practised. Severe complications during birth or surgeries may demand sudden intensive care for the patient and equally the chance of medical negligence also increases with increased responsibility. Medical professionals always update themselves with basic life support modules and emergency drugs expecting a medical complication or emergency anytime in the office.

Medical branches have not only taken care of healthcare as a whole but also act as a security guard towards its fraternity branches of healthcare. The support to medical professional is given by the branch of nursing which trains nurses and assistants to be the right hand of a practitioner.

Nursing not only acts as the right hand of the practitioner but also acts as the conduit between the medical and dental practitioners. A dental practitioner is equally trained as a medical professional excluding certain departments and culture. A dental practitioner not only limits himself to the matter concerning teeth but with advanced dentistry; a dental practitioner also trains himself in basic life support and head and neck surgeries, standing in the same operation theatre as a general surgeon.

With advancing dentistry both responsibility and risk factors increase for the practitioner. Knowledge about management of medical emergencies is necessary if precipitated on the dental chair. The knowledge of the complete human body does give access to the dentists to equally behave as a medical professional but the reason behind dentist being regarded as less important by society is that presents itself as a very safe practice.

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Even though the medical and dental emergencies exist, a precaution is always the first line of treatment for such patients. Dentistry as a profession is a controlled healthcare profession, but it would not be wrong to say that it is one of the super specialities of medical profession involving the complications and pathologies arising specifically in the head and neck region. The importance of such practise is not vital because of a parallel healthcare branch of medical science, which is called or termed as ENT specialist takes care of any complication in medical atmosphere and the dentist is allowed to operate a safe practice.

Here is where medical and dental symbiosis occurs, our brothers in medicine not only provide us with important and updated information but also help in managing the complications arising from the practice of dentistry. The medico-dentico symbiosis is important because it establishes a professional harmony in society and helps patients to gain confidence in healthcare. Both branches aid each other technically and help in prospering of their respective professions. Apart from this medico-dentico symbiosis also helps in conducting surveys, counselling patients and eradicating diseases to promote general public health.

They come together as a motivator and establish a strong connection in spreading awareness. The advanced and upcoming branch of forensic odontology in dentistry is a fraternity of the medical branch of forensic science, specialised to deal only in terms of teeth and this branch has helped forensic experts of medical backgrounds to establish age, gender and finding the cause of the crime or disaster; a forensic odontologist always becomes a part of forensic team when it comes to disaster management protocols and investigations.

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Other branches of healthcare like physiotherapists and AYUSH act as an alternative to allopathic medicine. In the end, it is the motto of the healthcare industry to maintain clean, hygienic and disease-free environments in society. The achievement of this goal is done by various approved medicines of healthcare researches.

The symbiosis of all these groups is important in society to fight advancing diseases. It cannot be ignored that the basic need to improve healthcare arises due to the dependency and adaptation of the diseases in the pathological world. The collective effort and work of all the professions help in exploring a disease and stress-free environment, preserving the professional harmony among all the branches of health and also help in updating, managing and spreading awareness in public health and preserving the principles of health education.

In the healthcare industry there should never be an ‘I’ but as a team, it should always be a ‘me’. The advantage of the symbiosis is there is increased confidence in the patient along with the awareness of various dental anomalies arising through or not via medical conditions. This symbiosis also helps in the designing of treatment plan for all the pathologies which may arise from a collective iatrogenic or non-iatrogenic effort of healthcare as a whole.


Dr Rajesh Patnaik, B. D. S. Hobbies - writing, filmography, badminton in sports, stage theatre etc

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