Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Improving doctor patient communcation

Millions of dollars are spent on trying to teach medical students, residents and practising doctors communication skills, so they can talk to their patients in simple English. I feel this is the wrong end of the stick, and this money could be much more productively used in order to teach patients how to talk to their doctors. Patients need to learn some basic tools, so that they can get their doctors to listen to them and to understand their problems and desires.

The problem with trying to teach doctors is that good doctors don't need to be taught;and bad doctors will never learn !

Patients, on the other hand, are much more motivated - after all, they have much more at stake !

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