Some members of the medical community lamented a scene from a television show for its erroneous portrayal of medical protocols.
They were reacting to an episode from GMA-7’s “Abot Kamay Na Pangarap” that was aired on October 1.
To promote the episode, GMA-7 released a three-minute highlight on its social media channels.
— GMA Network (@gmanetwork) October 1, 2022
The video showed the main character named Analyn Santos (Jillian Ward), a doctor who was trying to save a patient who has appendicitis and needs immediate surgery.
Santos wanted to perform the surgery herself. However, her colleagues warned her that she has not yet done such a medical procedure on her own.
By the end of the short clip, she was able to call a surgeon to help the patient in need.
The drama series, which premiered last September, follows the story of Santos, a neurosurgeon, and her illiterate mother named Lyneth (Carmina Villarroel) as they try to help and support each other’s dreams.
How social media reacted
The highlighted moment that GMA-7 shared online drew mixed reactions from viewers.
The post on the network’s Facebook page has had 4.3 million views so far.
It also garnered 60,000 reactions that are mostly positive. It has 38,000 likes, 21,000 heart reactions and 726 care reactions.
Some doctors, however, criticized the depiction of how hospital protocols and processes work.
They advised medical interns and students not to emulate what Santos did in the episode.
“Wag tularan, di po ganito ang proseso,” physician Gia Sison said.
“To med students: wag tularan. May tamang proseso ng referral,” dermatologist Winlove Mojica tweeted.
Another physician, Harold Henrison Chiu, meanwhile, lamented that the scene sends the wrong message to viewers even if the series is fictional.
“This sends out a wrong message to the viewers on how the medical field specifically, hospital, ER and OR settings work. Will not go into the specific details on differentials, diagnosis and management but The Art and Science of Medicine have both been gravely compromised,” Chiu tweeted.
Others also hoped that television shows in the country would consult medical professionals if they were to portray these scenarios.
“[Whomever] their writer is, consult a medical professional if you are going to write scenes like this, I swear putting [medical scenes] is risky and you need a professional for [that] unless u have a background,” one user said.
Some people defended the “Abot Kamay Na Pangarap” video. They said that that the main character eventually got reprimanded by the end of the episode.
“[Anyway], guys chill, Dra. Analyn actually got reprimanded [badly] in a later scene for bypassing protocol. Other scenes show na the appendicitis impression was not made just with a single poke in the RLQ. And yes her seniors doubted her impression dahil they actually had other [diagnosis],” a Twitter user said.
Television dramas in the Philippines have often struggled to portray some degree of realism to the public.
In 2018, a clip from “Kambal Karibal” also received backlash over an erroneous execution of cardiopulmonary resuscitation or CPR.