On Becoming a Doctor


  1. Some people are forced into medicine because of parental persuasion. Parents may think that once they grow older, doctors in the house can help ease their treatment process that may become a necessity in the old age.
  2. The misconception about doctors’ life and personal wealth make many parents envious and dream about the life ahead for their children. Nonetheless, medicine is a noble profession. It is not a trade and secondary advantages should not be the aim.
  3. A good doctor must possess some good qualities like empathy, compassion, professionalism, hard work, confidence, passion and more importantly, he must like his work more than anything else. As a result, there is no retirement for doctors. Once a doctor, always a doctor!
  4. The practice of medicine is guided by strict work ethics. Doctors must be willing to study and improve their medical knowledge for the rest of their life. Malaysian Medical Council (MMC) has made compulsary for doctors to attend continous professional development (CPD) before the renewal of new medical licences.
  5. I become a doctor because I like to play a critical role in anything I do. Throughout my career, I was made to decide where should I go. When I was in the Ministry of Health, I strategically decided to push myself into teaching, service and research by joining a university. It was a strategic decision that I’ve never regretted. It gives me a sense of freedom and self-empowerment. I believe human beings should be empowered to take charge and trust themselves as there is no one else on earth that is better suited to determine their ideal and making it happen anyway.
  6. 33 years in medicine is a long time. Moving up and about the corridor of services from government clinics and hospitals to private clinics and hospitals; from public to private universities had given me real time perspective of the healthcare business.
  7. Lest we forget is that doctors solve problems day in, day out. Critical thinking and problem-solving skills are embedded in problem-based learning (PBL) subjects.
  8. PBL teaches students to decipher complex information query into simple learning objectives which they need to find the answer on their own by checking medical textbook, journal and electronic references. The whole exercises help students learn to utilize their brain to solve medical puzzles.
  9. My last message to matriculation students is UniSHAMS Kulliyah of Medicine is here to make it happen.

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