Thursday Sep 19, 2019
The skill that differentiates good doctors and great doctors
What makes a doctor not just good but great? Clinical knowledge and skills are important, but “after years of practice I often feel that the science has become incidental to doctoring,” writes Kenny Lin, MD, MPH. All other things being equal, what separates the good from the great is curiosity about others.
A curious physician considers what life is like in the other person’s shoes and seeks to know the details of their patients’ lives that aren’t strictly clinical — their character, culture, past, hopes, etc. Your curiosity turns patients, especially the most “difficult” ones, into people with whom you can empathize and share a common core of humanity, Lin writes.
Don’t let today’s pressures to be more efficient and productive keep you from taking the time to inquire about patients’ stories. It’s an important skill and one that can sustain you in your work.
Read the full FPM article: “What Makes a Doctor Truly Great.”
Insightful, quick-read tips delivered straight to your inbox
Sign up to receive FPM's free, weekly e-newsletter, "Quick Tips & Insights," filled with practical, peer-reviewed advice you can put to work right now to improve patient care, streamline your day, get properly reimbursed, and improve career satisfaction.
Posted at 08:00AM Sep 19, 2019 by FPM Editors