When DLSHSI President Br. Gus Boquer FSC spoke about this year’s commencement speaker to the graduating batch of the College of Medicine, he spoke not only as a dear friend, but as a patient who has personally experienced how it is to be cared for and healed by a doctor whose compassion for his patients is, in his words, “phenomenal.”
“I invited him to come over and speak to you because I want you to be inspired by him; by this man whose mere mention of name will comfort and assure an anxious patient who is about to undergo a complex surgery,” related Br. Gus to the 98 new doctors graduating from the DLSHSI College of Medicine during the 29th Commencement Exercises.
He was speaking of Dr. Augusto Perez Sarmiento, a celebrated surgeon and Chairman of the Board of Directors of The Medical City.
“His bedside manners are phenomenal, and I speak from personal experience. He takes time to talk to each patient, to ask them about their pains, their worries, and patiently explains to them the whys and hows of their medical condition and in the process gives them assurance that truly, they are in good hands, and that the best care is going to be provided to them,” he adds.
There is no wonder then that Dr. Augusto Sarmiento has been conferred the Legends of the Knife Award by the Philippine College of Surgeons and the Most Outstanding Oncologist of the Philippine Society of Oncology.
“The consistently long line of patients who patiently wait for him outside ofhis clinic and his genuine desire to help all of them, have not hindered him from building The Medical City into the health institution that it is today,” said Br. Gus, as he reminded the graduates that “His story of success and most important, his humility as he reaped the fruits of his hard work should inspire you that there are limitless opportunities available to you, thanks to the Lasallian medical education that you have gained here at DLSHSI.”
During his speech, the former examiner of the Philippine Board of Surgery and Past President of the Philippine College of Surgeons impressed opun the new doctors not only the prestige of being a doctor but at the same time, the burden of their responsibility as a privileged member of this society.
“I hope you will allow me to brief youabout the burdens of being a true physician. Doctors are providers of care, and this care that you extend depends on what kind of doctor you are. The knowledge, skills, and attitudes that you learned from your school, your teachers and your training simply facilitated and contributed to your formation, but in the end you are fully responsible for the quality of care and service you render and for your own artistry. All the mistakes, error and inaccuracy that you will commit are all in your hands, and believe me, when I say that in your journey you will have your share of this. You cannot use ignorance as an excuse because as doctors, you should be lifelong learners and should keep yourselves informed. You cannot use lack of resources, support, and money as an excuse. Whatever paths you take never forget to that you are all physicians, members of the privileged sector of society, who are supposed to be vested by knowledge of human bodies, grace, and with wisdom and know-how to help and able to navigate through the challenges and the many factors that impact on the public’s health.”