The Power of General Practice – Dr. Haider Ali

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Authors: Dr. Bilal Zafar, Maria Rosa Ferreira, Inês Serra, Kashmala Khan

Dr. Haider Ali, an enthusiastic individual who had no prior motives to choose the profession. He was influenced to become one after seeing the dedication and tireless efforts doctors put towards their profession; where the health of their patients always comes first. Moments like these convinced him to become who he is today and made him recognize the right choice for himself. His hard work and enthusiasm towards his profession help him get through the challenges. Nothing stops him from achieving his goals.

“The way I was raised was to do something helpful for people. Medicine was not on my radar. I had a huge distaste of blood. A lot of medics seem to have. When I was 13, I had a really bad injury with glass. Back then I lived in Sweden. Some excellent doctors saved my arm. I had to stay awake during the procedure as it was an emergency procedure. That inspired me to do something similar. At that point, I still didn’t know medicine was for me. I saw the great work general practitioners did, the great work nurses did. That is when I knew healthcare is what I want to do. I am grateful I had great mentors who pushed me in the direction of medicine.

Dr. Haider Ali

Adrenaline in General Practice

As every medical student, Dr. Haider didn’t see the charm in becoming a general physician. Medical students aim to achieve heroism by practicing much more than prescribing medicines for epidemic diseases and dealing with day-to-day mundane infections. The adrenaline rush associated with being one step ahead of a ‘doctor’ and becoming a part of the specialist community suppresses the real delight and pleasure in general practice.

Source: Instagram @health_fitness_doc

 “Much like other medical students, I also thought general practice would be the last thing I would do. Today, medical students and colleagues discuss and ask questions about different medical issues. They probably read research papers which we don’t get a chance to because we are busy with work. Such people keep me on my toes and because of them, I am forever fresh and interested in my field. Also, I share medical education online for other medical students and practitioners.”

Dr. Haider Ali

Uncountable Gratitude and Accomplishments

There is no second opinion over the belief that general practice homes countless moments of gratitude and respect. Dr. Haider Ali is passionate about his field as it fulfills the desire for accomplishing bigger things every day.

One of my promising moments was speaking to a patient for a couple of minutes more. This patient could not portray correctly what was wrong with her because of the language barrier. But with a simple translation, my senior and I figured out the condition and cured it. It was a life-threatening condition and I told myself that ‘wow, I made a difference’. Every time I make a difference, whether it is psychologically or physiologically, the feeling of accomplishment comes back and this feeling stops me from thinking of it as a boring job. It is a fulfilling job.”

Dr. Haider Ali
Source: Instagram @health_fitness_doc

Working in the field of medicine is not easy. It comes with tremendous struggles. Doctors experience exhaustion and burn-outs. The field requires them to invest their hundred percent, no matter what. However, destressing tips can help them overcome burnout and improve their performance. Dr. Ali faced similar struggles and chose social media to destress. Although it didn’t really help him a lot.

At first I thought I could manage stress with social media, like Instagram. Later I realized it is actually stressful. I took a step back. It has been 10 days and I haven’t posted anything. It is actually comforting.”

Dr. Haider Ali

Volunteering at the Court

Dr. Haider Ali does not restrict himself to the premises of the hospital. He spends his free time volunteering at the basketball court. It gives him a chance to get a breather, keeping his mental and physical health in good shape. In addition, it allows him to cater to the players’ medical concerns.

 “[…] also volunteer as a sports doctor for a local professional basketball team. It keeps me active which we know is beneficial for physical and mental health. It helps me move away from my day to day job. Teaching, educating and helping are stress relievers for many doctors, at least for me. It gives me space outside work. Getting out of routine is really helpful.

Dr. Haider Ali
Instagram @health_fitness_doc

Extend Empathy & Help to Fellow Medical Students

Dr. Haider Ali reflects upon the field of medicine and says that every medical university has many brilliant minds. Each mind has a different set of unsolved mysteries, struggles, and educational concerns. Medical students should be empathetic and supportive towards their batch mates. You never know what struggles the other person is going through, even if it doesn’t seem like that. Furthermore, studying medicine is tough. Supporting each other during the struggle is the real deal.

“You are going to be in a highly motivated and intelligent environment. It may look like they don’t need any help but the more you ask the more you say I am struggling and the better you do. No one did medical school on their own. None of us was born with medical knowledge in our brains. The ones who did the best were the ones who always had their hands up saying I am struggling, I am not sure I got this right. In reality, we are in a world where we need more healthcare professionals. Ask, ask for help. I wish I had asked more. I think my medical journey to this date would have been far easier.”

Dr. Haider Ali
Instagram @health_fitness_doc

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