You have heard all the lawyer jokes, turned to be weary when dealing with one and grew to love the doctors. Well the joke is on you, and here is why!
Before you love the doctors too much look around and think. The reason why someone on a wheelchair can rove around our cities with little hindrance is because of the lawyers. The reason why we don’t have lead in our paint (which would eventually give your or your kid cancer) is because of lawyers. The reason why factory and construction workers are given the expensive protective gear that save lives are because of lawyers. The reason why you buy your car with warranty is because of lawyers. And when you pay $30,000 or more for a car which turns out to be defective and threatens your safety the lawyers are to the rescue once again.
When consumers are in great financial loss or stand too lose a great deal of money they turn to the lawyers. When citisens stand to lose their fundamental rights and are discriminated, they turn to lawyers. When people are in great pain or ill, they turn to doctors. It is fair to say that as many doctors have “hurt” their patients there would probably be the same number of lawyers who have “hurt” their clients just due to the fact that there are greedy and incompetent people out there regardless of their profession.
So why do we “hate” lawyers?
You interact with a lawyer only when you need help or when you have done something wrong. When you have been wronged, the lawyer will most likely get you back to where you were before or what you want. If you have to pay, they losing side will most likely pay for your attorney fees, and even if they don’t you will be doing a whole lot better than you could have been without one. So if you are a “good guy” they lawyer is always welcomed.
The thing is out of the two parties involved, one has got to hate the lawsuit and the lawyer by association.
So why do we “love” doctors?
You interact with a doctor when you have pain or a life threatening condition. Doctors are trained to give the gift of life. Thanks to modern medicine there is more than one possible treatment available for most illnesses. Most of these are drugs developed by various pharmaceutical companies who actively lobby and convince doctors to implement their drugs over the ones offered by a competitor. Often time, or almost always, the “convincing” is tied with strong financial benefits. So every doctor, or a hospital, is usually in alliance with this or that company and uses their products only regardless of it efficiency and efficacy. For example, doctors at Kaiser cannot prescribe medications that are not on their “list” and offered by their “pre-approved” companies. (Read our article on Kaiser here.)
As you can see doctors have strong ties with biotech companies which create conflicts of interests that would otherwise be illegal for ANY attorney to be involved. Any such conflicts are to be “fully disclosed” to clients by a lawyer and the failure to disclose can lead to serious punishment and even revocation of ones license. Doctors have no such duties!
So next time you visit your doctor and receive a prescription, whether it is for a common cold, infection, or chemotherapy – ask the doctor about any financial or contractual interests with the company that makes the drugs you are being prescribed.