There was a time, long long ago (about 60 years) when it cost only Rs. 5 to get treatment from a doctor. He examined you closely, talked to you in a fatherly way, and spent at least fifteen minutes before writing a prescription and giving it to his employee ("compounder") to prepare what was called a "mixture". You had to take it three times a day for two days, and you were rid of whatever was troubling you (usually a cold and fever).

Today, the least amount one has to pay a doctor (not a specialist) is at least a thousand (if you live in DHA or Clifton), and this same amount has to be paid to him on your second and third visits. 

But recently I've been going to a doctor who charges Rs. 5,000 for every time one goes to him. He is not a specialist although he has two degrees from Bombay. But even though he charges so much, he has many patients. I had to wait an hour before two patients of his had been examined. He prescribed many tests (which cost Rs. 26,000), and on my second visit, he told me to take another test for my bladder, which would probably cost another Rs. 10,000. The tests would have cost much less (only a third) if I'd gone to another laboratory, but he had insisted on the most expensive lab in the country.

So this month I'm poorer by Rs. 45,000 at least. I do wish our rulers had made health insurance compulsory for everyone fifty years back. At least that would have lessened the burden on people.Oh well, no use cribbing, this was bound to happen.