Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

The Total Package: A Skillful, Compassionate Doctor

Date:
January 26, 2009
Source:
Indiana University
Summary:
Patients and their families want physicians who are gifted in diagnosis and treatment and who are caring individuals with the interpersonal skills needed to communicate complex information in stressful circumstances. A new study shows training physicians to be humanistic is feasible and produces measurably better communicators.

Patients and their families want physicians who are gifted in diagnosis and treatment and who are caring individuals with the interpersonal skills needed to communicate complex information in stressful circumstances.

A new study in the January 2009 issue of Academic Medicine shows training physicians to be humanistic is feasible and produces measurably better communicators.

"Humanism in medicine isn't about sitting and singing Kumbaya, it is about taking the individual patient's concerns and values into account in his or her treatment," said study co-author Richard Frankel, Ph.D. "Those values are clearly linked to higher quality of care and reduction of medical errors yielding safety improvement." Dr. Frankel is a professor of medicine at the Indiana University School of Medicine and a Regenstrief Institute research scientist.

The study was conducted at five very different medical schools – Emory University School of Medicine, Indiana University School of Medicine, the University of Rochester School of Medicine, Baylor College of Medicine and the University of Minnesota Medical School – rather than only one institution. The authors believe their findings are generalizeable throughout American medical education.

The 2001 Institute of Medicine report, "Crossing the Quality Chasm: A New Health System for the 21st Century," highlighted the benefits of patient-centered humane care that is respectful of and responsive to patients' needs, values and concerns.

The concept of humanism in medicine and patient-centered care predates the 21st century. In the 1920's Francis Peabody, M.D., wrote that "the secret of care of the patient is caring for the patient" a humanistic concept that in the intervening years has become overshadowed by a preoccupation with technological advances in medicine, the same technology that resulted in the development of antibiotics and thousands of other life-saving drugs, sophisticated scanning devices and untold number of vital therapies.

"Traditionally medical school curricula have focused on the pathophysiology of disease while neglecting the very real impact of disease on the patient's social and psychological experience, that is, their illness experience. It is in this intersection that humanism plays a profound role," said Dr. Frankel, who is a medical sociologist.

"As educators, we aim to foster the development of future physicians who are competent both technically and interpersonally. Patients, their families, and the public expect no less of us. This study suggests there are various faculty development processes that will allow us all to pursue these aims more effectively," said study co-author Thomas Inui, M.D., I.U. School of Medicine associate dean for health care research and Sam Regenstrief Professor of Health Services Research. Dr. Inui also is president and CEO of the Regenstrief Institute.

Other authors of the study, which was funded by the Arthur Vining Davis Foundations, are William T. Branch, Jr., M.D., of Emory University; Catherine F. Gracey, M.D., of the University of Rochester; Paul M. Haidet, M.D., M.P.H., of Baylor College of Medicine; Peter F. Weissmann, M.D., of the University of Minnesota Medical School; Paul Cantey, M.D, M.P.H., formerly of Emory and now of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; and Gary A. Mitchell, M.D., formerly at the IU School of Medicine, now with the American University of the Caribbean School of Medicine.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Indiana University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Indiana University. "The Total Package: A Skillful, Compassionate Doctor." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 26 January 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/01/090122100822.htm>.
Indiana University. (2009, January 26). The Total Package: A Skillful, Compassionate Doctor. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 18, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/01/090122100822.htm
Indiana University. "The Total Package: A Skillful, Compassionate Doctor." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/01/090122100822.htm (accessed April 18, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, April 18, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) The breakthrough could mean a cure for some serious diseases and even the possibility of human cloning, but it's all still a way off. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Obama: 8 Million Healthcare Signups

Obama: 8 Million Healthcare Signups

AP (Apr. 17, 2014) President Barack Obama gave a briefing Thursday announcing 8 million people have signed up under the Affordable Care Act. He blasted continued Republican efforts to repeal the law. (April 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Is Apathy A Sign Of A Shrinking Brain?

Is Apathy A Sign Of A Shrinking Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) A recent study links apathetic feelings to a smaller brain. Researchers say the results indicate a need for apathy screening for at-risk seniors. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) A new study conducted by researchers at Northwestern and Harvard suggests even casual marijuana use can alter your brain. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins