Chiang Rai doctor suspended over ‘stupid’ argument

A doctor at Chiang Saen Hospital in Chiang Rai province has been suspended and is facing an investigation from the Medical Council of Thailand after a loud argument with a patient.

Hospital director Sookchai Theansavettrakul explained the problem stemmed from miscommunication between the doctor, the patient and her relatives.

Sookchai said the hospital had suspended the doctor for five days pending an internal investigation.

A video clip circulating on social media shows the doctor sitting cross-legged on a chair while fiddling with her mobile phone. She appears to call the patient and her relatives, ngo (stupid) as the two sides trade insults.

The 36 year old patient, who is 12 weeks pregnant, came to the hospital for treatment for morning sickness after experiencing nausea and difficulty eating. She complained of feeling exhausted and having stomach pains. In the emergency room, the doctor attempted to administer an injection, but the patient refused, claiming to be allergic to the drug in question, and demanded intravenous fluid instead.

The doctor denied her request and a heated argument broke out between the two sides.

The Medical Council of Thailand (MCT) has been in contact with the hospital and will lead the inquiry.

Itthaporn Kanacharoen, MCT secretary-general, posted on his Facebook that after reviewing the case, the MCT will investigate the doctor for “ discourteous conduct toward a patient during treatment,” which he claims has tarnished the prestige and reputation of the profession.

After that, the council board will consider any penalty to be imposed on the doctor.

Itthaporn asked the public to be understanding of the stressful working conditions of medical staff that can trigger such outbursts.

Northern Thailand News

Jon Whitman

Jon Whitman is a seasoned journalist and author who has been living and working in Asia for more than two decades. Born and raised in Glasgow, Scotland, Jon has been at the forefront of some of the most important stories coming out of China in the past decade. After a long and successful career in East sia, Jon is now semi-retired and living in the Outer Hebrides. He continues to write and is an avid traveller and photographer, documenting his experiences across the world.

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