What are the attributes of a Good Doctor?
I am writing a series on articles for Medical Students on what skills and attributes patients value most in a Medical Doctor. I would like your opinion as to what you think are the most important attributes a Doctor should have...
Competent, caring, careful, and spend time listening to the patients. Most famous doctors or specialists here are too busy that they rush from one patient to another, and spend minimum time listening to their patients and answer their questions. On the other hand, we don't want the appointment to be too long, esp if I am the one waiting outside.
I think a competent doctor who cares more about the interest of the patient than monetary return is what I am looking for.
Some doctors have bad bedside manner,cold distant,matter of fact,prudish antics.
If all doctors delivered info as if they were speaking to a member of their own family or loved one,we would not have a problem.
Good listening skills, intuition, discernment, empathy and compassion. Doctors are my "bane" in life...we need them to live, but avoid them at all cost, because there are so few that listen, can read between the lines, discern, or step into the patient's shoes or see past their wallet...this has been my personal experience. Had I to do it over, I would study medicine and be the kind of doc I look for and need...have walked away from many because they do not listen, because they have contempt prior to investigation, or just plain don't seem to really care about me, just my money. A drop of compassion goes a long way, in the world of healing...
They should take a big dose of humility. Remember that they may know a lot of long words, have taken a degree in medicine, know a fair bit about bodies in general. Remember that they may have an honorary title of doctor (they're not real doctors until they get a doctorate and then they call themselves Mr/Mrs/Miss).
Remember that the real expert in the patient's body is the patient, when they're told by the patient that there is something wrong with the way it is working, then there is something wrong; when the patient tells them that the medicine is doing no good, then it is doing no good. They should not become arrogant, pretentious, patronising bullies.
That should pull most doctors out of their delusion of self importance.
Of course education and experience that come with time and age. But other than that a real good personable and humble bed side manner that's not condescending works wonders for me.
Someone who looks at you in the eyes, that listens, and does their best to make help us help ourselves to not require their services unless it's an emergency. They do this by advising ways to eat better, to exercise more, to get better rest. Treat the source, not the symptoms. That's an excellent doctor. Beware of those who seek to treat symptoms with lots of pills within the first 5 minutes of talking to them.
In my experience, one of the qualities I find most lacking, is the inability to "hear" the patient. I see that he/she is looking at me, but not fully engaged. I respect the hectic, overtaxed schedules and demands that physicians face today and it is daunting. I would like to know that the time I spend in the office, often waiting beyond the time he/she would wait for me, is productive. The cost of medical care in the U.S. is exorbitant. But beyond that, the most important consideration is the fact that I have "chosen" this particular doctor and need to know that I can place my trust in him. A list of qualities I feel are imperative for excellence in achieving the best in medical care are, aside from the obvious educations and degrees are:
2) Concern without being an alarmist
3) The ability to listen and ask questions to clarify
4) An understanding that many, but not all, patients know
their bodies enough to know when something is wrong.
5) Allow for open discussion without condensending
6) Refrain from comments like "I'm the doctor" or "don't ask so many questions", "stop thinking so much, it'll just get you in trouble." Give the same respect you require from your patients.
A doctor I engaged for a second opinion violated my trust when he told me I did not need to know "why" I was having a medical problem. It was good enough that I had medication that was helping and to smile, go home and take my meds. His office had the audacity to send me another bill for the $5 they had mistakenly left off. I filed the bill in my circular file. I almost sent them a bill of my own for wasted time and "abuse through arrogance". I figured that, too, would be a waste of my time as I doubt he was intelligent enough to understand my disappointment.
Thank you for the opportunity to answer a question that impacts many lives.
A good nurse, and not for the reason that first crossed your mind. Recognizing that the patient is the reason for their work is how nurses come to work. Doctors would do well to do some training under nurses for a while, instead of the other way around.
One who listens to his patients, takes an interest in their lives (environmental issues can often cause illness, after all), and believes what their patients have to say. People who say they are in pain or otherwise in distress don't exagerate, though most doctors I've known assume we do.
Just one:to help you get well.....
For everything else there is friends,family,priest
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