I have been practising medicine for 50 years and I have always considered myself a stickler for medical ethics. I learned from your issue of April-June, 2010 that, at least in two aspects, I have been guilty of unethical practices. I have no intention of changing my habits in the rest of my professional life, and so must continue to violate the boundaries you have laid down. From the day I saw my first patient, I always thought I should be a friend to my patients. I must confess that many of them have become lifelong friends of mine, some over several decades. I stay in their houses when I go to their cities, and they stay in mine when they come to Chennai. We actively socialise. I attend weddings in their families, and they attend functions in mine. We exchange presents on occasions. I receive presents, and I give presents too.
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