Here is a shocking statistic not to be passed over: “the average American physician interrupts their patient in 14 seconds”. This, according to Doctor Abraham Verghese in his eye-opening TED Talk.
Perhaps it’s not surprising after all. In this technology-saturated world, some prefer to stare at a computer screen to learn the facts, than to engage in empathetic discussion.
Yes, the technology has provided important innovations in medicine and efficiency. But, as Doctor Verghese argues – the most important innovation is the power of human touch.
To take care of the patient, is to take care of their mind, their concerns, and emotions – and that can only be done with active listening, attentiveness, and dedicated time.
Soft-skills, and bedside manner training is becoming increasingly important and integrated into medical school and hospitals around the world. Of course it’s nothing new, but the argument for increased emphasis on patient-doctor relationship building is one that demands attention.
Consider adding in role-playing, or scenario based training. After all, even a doctor’s office is a stage.