25 Feb The Experts: How to Improve Doctor-Patient Communication
Editor’s note: The following is an excerpt from “The Experts” section of The Wall Street Journal.
With the advent of digital record keeping, I worry that we are losing the ability to look our patients in the eyes, listen intently to their fears and concerns and provide the support and caring that is so necessary for a relationship that promotes healing. I have always thought that the conversations with patients have the potential to be therapeutic or harmful. We can promote the kind of communication that enables patients to be better able to make difficult choices, to be more confident in pursuing the strategies they choose and to be more likely to achieve the results that they desire. And we need to avoid the kind of communication that alienates patients from the health-care system, inhibits them from honestly disclosing how they feel and what they need, interferes with their ability to make the choices that best fit them and reduces the likelihood that they will get the outcomes they desire.