Screening & Diagnostic Tests: Don’t fall for the sales push
Preventive healthcare packages (PHP) are targeted at everyone right from age two. While diagnostic tests are necessary to find what made you unhealthy, screening is often unnecessary and harmful. Raj Pradhan collates advice from sensible doctors
High stress levels, junk food intake, sedentary lifestyles all add up to make preventive healthcare programme (PHP) an easy sell for doctors and hospitals.
The question is: What is ‘healthy’? Wellness initiatives like quit smoking, regular exercise, yoga, etc, are undoubtedly crucial for leading a healthy lifestyle; but who is really ‘healthy’?
Senior citizens are most vulnerable to the hardsell for PHP packages; they are quickly converted to patients or put on daily medication because modern medicine does not tell them that several minor aberrations in health parameters can be corrected by exercise and improved diet. Buying heath check-up for parents’ birthday is a good marketing gimmick which shows you care. It’s a ploy. Drug companies organise screening camps which use their own products. Apollo Pharmacy even has people queuing up to get instant blood sugar and pressure testing outside their shops.
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