Doctor-patient relationship and public trust in health science in post-COVID world: Lessons from USA and India

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Kunal Saha, MD, PhD


Building better trust between doctors and patients is key to improving the standard of healthcare delivery system in rich and poor countries alike. Trust between doctors and patients depends on a variety of ill-defined factors that include physician behavior, skill, cost of healthcare and societal perception of integrity of the medical community. Mode of practice of medicine has undergone radical changes during the COVID-19 pandemic with frequent use of PPE and long-distance video consultancy. COVID-19 pandemic has caused enormous pain, suffering and death across the globe.  While many morbidities and mortalities due to COVID-19 were inevitable, gross medical mismanagements of COVID-19 have also contributed to increased rate of death of COVID-19 patients in many countries.  Most importantly, shocking political intrusion of medical science during the COVID-19 pandemic has caused unprecedented erosion of public trust in the medical profession in several countries, particularly in USA and India.  Top medical leaders in the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in USA, the “gold standard” medical authorities, stood speechless next to the USA president, Donald Trump, as he brazenly made numerous false, unscientific and dangerous claims to prevent and cure COVID-19.  Top government healthcare authorities in India also spread misinformation and baseless claims about COVID-19 morbidities and mortalities to misguide ordinary people.  While some devious medical leaders shamelessly supported the bogus claims under sinister pressure from their political leaders, other doctors around the world made tremendous selfless sacrifice and stepped forward to save the victims of COVID-19 even at the risks to their own lives.  Although there is little doubt that experience during the COVID-19 pandemic may have significant impact on public trust in the medical profession in the future, whether doctor-patient relationship will improve or deteriorate in the post-COVID world remains uncertain at this juncture.  But it is imperative that the medical community must send a strong and clear message now disparaging any exploitation of the scientific evidence on COVID-19 pandemic in fear of any political or medical retribution.

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How to Cite
SAHA, Kunal. Doctor-patient relationship and public trust in health science in post-COVID world: Lessons from USA and India. Medical Research Archives, [S.l.], v. 9, n. 8, aug. 2021. ISSN 2375-1924. Available at: <>. Date accessed: 31 jan. 2023. doi:
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