Wednesday, June 13, 2012
Medicine's Public Relations Problem
He sometimes doesn't answer his pager. He "left it in the car"or some other tired excuse. Fellow physicians know that he is often unreachable. Patients wait by phones for hours hoping they will get a call back. His answering service has finally stopped making excuses and simply pages him again.
He's late to clinic every morning. Often after a long breakfast with his golf buddies, he strolls in an hour past his first appointment. His patients wait in cold rooms scantily dressed in gowns as he peruses the latest stock quotes on his computer. He instructs his staff to double and triple book.
He believes his title makes his opinion unassailable. He often enhances the best case scenario. He reserves end of life discussions till after the casket has long been buried under the ground. He cuts patients off mid sentence. He hands out narcotics and antibiotics freely, and never once considers his own fallibility.
He is absolutely the worst our profession has to offer. Yet, we turn our heads and wipe our hands clean of the bloody mess that he has made of our credibility.
What we have in medicine is a PR problem. If we expect the public to continue to remove our heads from the chopping block we are sadly mistaken.
It's time to rewrite the narrative.
Posted by Jordan Grumet at 5:24 AM