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Pakistani-origin physician forgives $650,000 debt for most cancers sufferers in US

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Pakistani-origin doctor forgives $650,000 debt for cancer patients in US

A Pakistani-origin physician in United States forgave greater than half 1,000,000 {dollars} in excellent money owed from practically 200 sufferers. 

Dr Omar Atiq based the Arkansas Cancer Clinic in 1991. But the clinic shut its doorways in February 2020 owing to workers scarcity. The clinic provided most cancers remedies starting from chemotherapy and radiation remedy and checks corresponding to CAT scans. 

Earlier this week, the clinic despatched out vacation greetings and informed sufferers that any excellent money owed would now not should be paid.

“I hope this note finds you well,” wrote Dr Atiq. “The Arkansas Cancer Clinic was proud to have you as a patient. Although various health insurances pay most of the bills for the majority of patients, even the deductibles and co-pays can be burdensome.”

“Unfortunately, that is the way our health care system currently works,” he added and knowledgeable sufferers that the most cancers clinic was closing follow after over 29 years of service.

“The clinic has decided to forego all balances owed to the clinic by its patients,” mentioned the notice. “Happy holidays.”

The excellent payments quantity to $650,000.

“We thought there was not a better time to do this than during a pandemic that has decimated homes, people’s lives and businesses and all sorts of stuff,” Dr Atiq told Arkansas Online. “We just thought we could do it, and we wanted to, so we went ahead and did it.”

The physician can also be a professor at UAMS College of Medicine and oncologist on the UAMS William P Rockefeller Cancer Institute.

According to the native day by day, the clinic labored with a billing firm to cancel the debt and guarantee no affected person who owed cash would face any sort of economic repercussions.

Originally from Pakistan, Dr Atiq moved to Pine Buff in 1991 after finishing a fellowship at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City.

“It really is fate,” he informed Arkansas Online. I moved my household to Arkansas after receiving a name from Jefferson Regional Medical Centre with a job supply.”

He added that the choice to maneuver was “life changing”. The physician turned the primary non-white president of the Arkansas Medical Society in 2013 and in 2018 he was named chairperson-elect of the board of governors of the American College of Physicians.

“We have been very grateful. This has been home for a long time. We are grateful for the opportunity for what has happened to our lives here,” he mentioned. “I believe the opportunities that have come my way are, in part, because of where I am.”

When the considered forgiving excellent debt first crossed his thoughts, Dr Atiq reached out to government vice-president of the Arkansas Medical Society, David Wroten.

Talking to Arkansas Online, Wroten mentioned Dr Atiq needed to make sure there was nothing improper about doing it. “I can’t, for the life of me, imagine there would be.”

“If you knew Dr Atiq, you would better understand. First, he is one of the smartest doctors I have ever known, but he is also one of the most compassionate doctors I have ever known.”

Wroten mentioned Dr Atiq “truly has a heart-felt love affair with the patients” and has gotten “as much from his patients as they have gotten from him”.

Noting that most cancers remedy is “very expensive”, Wroten mentioned that there are individuals who can pay on their payments for 20 years, could also be $10 a month.

Dr Atiq mentioned his clinic has quantity of excellent debt that it does partly as a result of “we have never refused to see a patient.”

“Not for lack of health insurance or funds nor for any other reason,” Atiq mentioned. “I’ve always considered it a high honour and privilege to be someone’s physician – more important than anything else.”

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