Reply To Dr Nagi Barakat
I read with interest your recent letter,published in Libya news&views. It looked like a poor attempt of PR exercise. Although nobody will question the noble cause of helping the libyan patients, however I have few reservations. First the problem in Libya is not lack of doctors as a substantial number of our colleagues were trained in western countries and have good professional standards. The problem is the local health policy which is part of the crumbling political system. The fact remains that any initiative is judged by its results.
So far and from my humble point of view the LDS remain unpopular among Libyan doctors locally and abroad. I believe the attendance in the last meeting in Hull was poor,this reflects the estime that it is held by Libyan doctors in the UK. In Libya it is not better as the local doctors think (rightly or wrongly) it is a stooge of the government. The arrogant attitude that was a blatant feature of the society's (offer) to help libyan patients managed only to alienate the locals. Help can't be imposed from outside, it can only be successful if the cooperation of the frontline doctors is granted.
The Council of Medical Specialties is dominated by dubious personalities associated with terrorism, vilified by most libyans. Therefore if you associate (or give the impression to associate) the LDS with it than you compromise the credibility of the society, and it will take a long time to restore this credibility. To prove the genuine will to help you should go to such places like ElKhoms, Misurata, Sebha, Eljaghboub, Ghat, Elkofra not only air conditioned premises in Tripoli & Benghazi! Take example of UK medics who do charity work in third world countries.
The fact that you go & see the relatives of the Libyan royal family doesn't help either. The bottom line is the way you approached things was wrong, it gave the wrong image, thrown suspicions on the LDS and made people question your motives. You will need a long time to win your colleagues trust.
P.S: I did not mean to offend, I only meant to reflect a lot of doctors opinion on recent events.