To the Editor:
I just read Dr. James Dykes’ article “Making Time to Listen.” I’m a second-year medical student at the University of Maryland in Baltimore, where I recently became secretary of the family medicine interest group.
I came to medical school focused on my personal belief that I am always going to spend quality time with my future patients, regardless of the specialty I choose. Now that I’m beginning to get out into the wards and offices, I hear of doctors’ worries about overhead costs, escalating malpractice insurance costs and lack of patient insurance. I hear physicians complain that they are required to see a certain number of patients a day. I am starting to feel concerned about how I will ever manage to spend the time with my patients that I would like.
Dr. Dykes’ article gave me hope that I can someday be the type of doctor I wish to be. He made a risky choice, but I am sure it is an amazing feeling to know that his patients value him and his time, and that he can give his patients the type of care they deserve. Thanks for publishing an article that helps this second-year med student know that all this book time and memorization are worth it.