Focus on patients' needs, NKF chairman urges doctors

KUALA LUMPUR: Medical practitioners have been urged to focus on patients' needs.

National Kidney Foundation (NKF) chairman Datuk Dr. Zaki Morad Mohd. Zaher said this was important given the change in time where previously it was a doctor-centric environment.

"This meant waiting for doctors for long periods and not asking about the patients' feelings," he said.

"But, over the years, (medical) systems have changed where everything revolves around the patient. The world has moved forward onto being patient-centred; it's about developing facilities and communication with them.

"We need to make sure to address the patients' concerns, but sometimes some doctors misread patient-centred care as conducting more medical tests for them," he told reporters today after witnessing NKF's 13th annual dialysis meeting launch here.

On financial, resources and budget cut challenges faced by doctors specialising in renal disease, he said that doctors are still able to face their patients' concerns.

"The doctors have to use their wisdom. Even when you're working in the best countries, resources are limited.

"Doctors must be wise enough to handle limited resources in the current setting. I'm sure they can do it because this isn't the first time we've faced (challenges) such as recession (both in the public and private sector) with cutbacks in budgets, but healthcare continues.

"Doctors will have to be more discriminating when conducting tests and X-rays.

"I'm sure our doctors can handle it," he said.