A Real Doctor
Farhad, a very dear and esteemed friend, is a doctor. Although he is a well known specialist with a thriving private practice, he does pro-bono work in a public clinic in a poor neighborhood of Tehran.
One day a patient arrived and right away he recited a list of drugs and asked Farhad to write the prescription. This isn’t so unusual over here: many people know better than the doctor what medicines they need.
Farhad asked about his problem. The patient told him that he wasn’t feeling well, that he was tired and described a few symptoms. While going through the routine examinations he talked further about his life: he had four or five children, he was a sopoor – a muni street sweeper – he had difficulty in making ends meet. He was worn out by the daily struggle to survive.
Farhad realized that he couldn’t cure his real problem. He told him that his physical condition was good and he didn’t need to spend the little money he had on unnecessary drugs. Finally, moved by the misery he witnessed, Farhad ended up paying the man enough to get a good meal, take a day off and rest.
The next day Farhad ran into the same patient coming out of the clinic. He asked him how he was feeling and what he was doing there. The patient replied, “God bless you, with the money you gave me I found a real doctor: he wrote me a prescription so I could get the medicine I wanted.”