Doctor lottery? Really?

This is a passionate outcry from a patient and the daughter of a patient, to improve the state of healthcare today. Why does one need to win the “Doctor Lottery” to find a compassionate, caring physician with enough time to listen for the subtle clues that indicate distress, deterioration, and to save a life?

The author argues that patient engagement is a paradigm shift for many organizations, and that it is a clear win-win when done well. 

Both of these articles are well written and more articulate than I am. I can say, in our organization, I routinely conducted bedside rounds, where residents and students presented the patient’s history, their examination findings and their assessments and plans in front of the patient and family, and we would discuss our plans together. Even in clinic, I have my students present their data and we have a discussion about the patient in front of the patient and family. This ALWAYS leads to better understanding by all parties, and has never been an obstruction to patient learning, or to student or resident training. And generally it does NOT take longer.

CMIO’s take? Healthcare technology and paternalistic traditions in healthcare both conspire to take us away from the bedside and risk impairing communication. Lets design better communication into everything we do.

Author: CT Lin

CMIO, UCHealth (Colorado); Professor, University of Colorado School of Medicine

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