Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Why Social Media?

The voice on other other end of the phone shook with volume and power. I could envision her fists shaking, her brow sweating, and her eyes bulging as if I was watching a bad reality show on TV. She was not just insinuating. She was outright accusing me of doctoring her medical record for my own personal gain.

I calmly listened to her fowl mouthed diatribe and waited for a moment to interrupt as she caught her breath. Should I tell her it was a hard day in the office? Explain that a patient was dying in the hospital? Would she have understood that I was just trying to follow government mandates and had been distracted by my first attempt at eprescribe?

So Yes...I did miss that my front desk employee had placed the wrong chart on my schedule. The names were so close. And I asked about her insurance status not to profile her but to decide whether to use eprescrbe or not.

In my heart I realized that she didn't want explanations. She was convinced that I was trying to harm her and I wasn't going to change her mind. It didn't matter that I correctly diagnosed her with pneumonia. She, in fact, got her antibiotic a few hours late but was feeling perfectly well now. But none of that mattered.

The truth is as physicians we are suffering from poor PR. Between the loss o faith from To Err is Human and the political wrangling of the PPACA we have gone from knights to knaves.

In the public eye the empathic physician has been replaced by the miserly clod who clumsily dances through doctoring in order to drive home in his BMW and trade stocks online.

We are looked at as greedy. We spend to much. We order too many tests. We make to many errors.

If those darn doctors would just do what they were trained to do!

Many physicians who struggle on the front lines see a very different picture. We are consumed by our career. We fight for our patent's well being as if they were family members. And we get burned over and over again by the oversimplification purveyed by catchy headlines and enthusiastic politicians.

In order to reverse the egregious harm done to our profession we have but one choice. We have to take our fight to the people.

Why do I use social media? I see it as a profound and effective way to communicate to our patients who we are. To re brand us back to the knights we strive to be.

Only then will they know our commitment. Only then will they have a window into our souls. Only then will they know that although we may not be lying with them on the operating table.....

we still bleed.

1 comment:

tracy said...

i admire Physicans so very much.

Thank you, Dr. Jordan.