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Who should or should not be called Doctor?

Its a never ending argument. Everyone would like to be call one. A doctor. A title one thought that can make you trustworthy. I am not sure whether the title give me special power or anything. I don't feel like it. Its a title to be use with cautious. Its a title of a certain responsibility.

Doctor means 'to teach'. Why medical doctor was called doctor was because traditionally, someone who know medicine, will teach other medicine. It's a normal thing to do. Hippocrates also mention in his oath about teaching medicine to his student. So from that moment on, doctor is also a teacher. Calling someone a doctor is equal to call someone a teacher.

However, after some times, the title became more famous among medical practitioner. Even though there are other field which also use doctor in their certificate. For example Justice Doctor, or those with PhD will automatically have doctor title infront of their name.

Thus argument started. Everyone want to become a doctor nowadays.

Medicine is a subject which have its own institution and a long history behind it. Medicine now is a evolution of a knowledge which is founded 300-400 BC. No one know when it was started. But since perhaps the first time human have a small prick in their skin and bled, they compress it with their hand, then that was the moment medicine was born. Medicine start formal science education or teaching long before somebody thought of teaching how to build a house. It was an old and ancient knowledge. I believe before gravity was introduced, medicine was already there. Maybe it was not same like today, but it was there.

So medical practitioner is one of the earliest to adopt the title doctor in their name. Thus, it somehow stuck in everyone mind all over the world. You say doctor, then you know that person practice medicine.

Today, it is not the same anymore. More and more people now more accessible to knowledge and study, they become doctor without learning medicine. They study hard as a medical doctor to earn their title. So they deserved to be called doctor.

I do agree they can use that title to reflect how much they study. However, there is consequences on using that.

For those who live in a country where most people are educated, the title may not bring any confusion. They can introduce themselves as doctor in law, or perhaps doctor in literature, people will understand. However here in my country where there is still illiterate people around, you introduced to them you are a doctor of physics, who will understand that. They would always thought you practice medicine.

But that would not likely cause any problem. The problem arise when someone has a particular interest in selling something.

Right. Look around you, there is ton of product sold in the market claimed to be the remedial of all illness, a herb that can cure diabetes, a food that can cure cancer..and guess what, the owner of the creator of that product is a doctor.

These is the problem. Those doctor never study medicine and then they try to act like a medical practitioner. They even wear lab coat in their advertisement.

So many times my mother ask me regarding a herbal product. I normally respond to not believe that advertisement but my mother would say " the owner of this product is a doctor". I would have to double check which medical school does the owner went? Likely they would not include that in their bio. The title doctor would suddenly pop out and only state the name of the college that give that.

This is the problem that cause us, medical doctor to worry a bit about the use of that title nowadays. Not that I want that title to be exclusive for medical practitioner but I want people to understand, someone is abusing that title. It does have power after all.

There is this traditional shaman or something, practicing chinese medicine, and he has a title doctor from a chinese college in China. People believe him more than medical doctor. He does have that education perhaps (if it is not a fraud) but you know, people are saying " he is also a doctor, don't worry, can take his medicine" but his medicine is full of herbs and unknown compound that may cause renal injury.

In my opinion, everyone that want to use that title should clearly state what kind of doctor he or she is. For example, we as medical doctor, how we put it in our name is... name, medical officer what grade, then our degree for example MBBS, MD, MRCP...

Not just doctor. People will understand that we study medicine so that we have that title.

Just like a Chef, you can call yourself a chef, you can open a restaurant and become the head of chef in your own restaurant, but you know that person who want to have that title have to enter culinary school or learn formally from a real chef. You can only be call a cook if you don't do it that way.

And one last thing, why do people like to call themselves a doctor? I will now let people call me doctor if I am not working or that someone is my family. I would not go to restaurant or shop and introduce my name as doctor. It's funny to do that way. You look like big jack ass by doing that.

Guess what, people who want to be call that way must be the people who don't deserved to be have that title. So getting the title you don't deserved, perhaps make you excited. haha.


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