Sunday, October 12, 2008

An Overview of Empathy

An Overview of Empathy: "Empathy is a powerful communication skill that is often misunderstood and underused. Initially, empathy was referred to as 'bedside manner'; now, however, authors and educators consider empathetic communication a teachable, learnable skill that has tangible benefits for both clinician and patient: Effective empathetic communication enhances the therapeutic effectiveness of the clinician-patient relationship. Appropriate use of empathy as a communication tool facilitates the clinical interview, increases the efficiency of gathering information, and honors the patient."

Empathetic doctors have patients who often become "raving fans" ! It's also important for patients to be empathetic, so they can get the best care from their doctor. Smart patients can sense when doctors have time to sit and chat - and when they don't !

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