42 percent people go to quacks

About 58% of patients seek treatment from drugstores, homeopathy doctors, Hakim-Kabiraj, Ojha, Pir, Baidya and others. According to stats given by Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS), more than half of the patients do not receive proper medical care. It further says that most people in the country do not go to certified doctors with Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) degree when they fall ill.

BBS released its 2016 final report Family Income and Expenditure Survey in June this year. The study found that 16 percent of patients get treatment at various levels of hospitals, including those in upazilas and districts, and from government community clinics. Meanwhile, 26 percent of patients take services from private hospitals, clinics and physicians and from private chambers.

Numerous financially solvent patients go abroad for treatment though there are big hospitals in the country, specialized medical institutions having modern technology and equipment. The number of doctors has also increased at the same time over the years. Professor Asit Baran Adhikari of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University (BSMMU) said, the country has made remarkable progress in cardiovascular surgery (cardiac surgery). From congenital heart disease to heart disease, there are skilled surgical doctors and well-equipped hospitals in the country, he added

About a thousand successful surgeries are taking place every month in the country. Many people refrain from seeking treatment as because there is no hospital or doctor near their home. Many think that going to a doctor can lead to a major disease. Many do not go to the doctor for this belief.

According to the latest BBS Family Income and Expenditure Survey, 42 percent of patients seek treatment at public-private hospitals and clinics, government-private medical college hospitals, specialized hospitals, private organizations (NGOs) and private chambers of qualified doctors. However, those who seek treatment do not go for treatment immediately after being ill. On an average four days after the disease, they go for treatment.

On the other hand, 93 percent of people buy medicines from the medicine stores. Patients receive only 3 percent of medicines from government hospitals. In this regard, Director General (DG) of the Health Department of the government, Abul Kalam Azad, said the tendency of patients to visit Jhar-Phuk, Ojha, Kabiraj is declining.

All the patients will receive quality treatment if people are aware and implement universal health protection programs nationwide, he added. Professor Syed Abdul Hamid, a professor of health economics at Dhaka University, said there was little progress in the field of medical treatment. Progress has been made in the treatment of some diseases. Statistics say most people do not seek treatment if they have the disease.

He said these statistics are saying that most people in the country do not get quality medical care. He further said, doctors and nurses are returning to the country with regular training from abroad, but there are still complaints about treatment. However, there is also expressed satisfaction of patients regarding treatment standard in the country.