Woman to Woman
Closing the Doctor-Patient Gap
Building a relationship with your doctor
Doctors: you love ‘em or hate ‘em. You’re not alone. They feel the same way about patients.
Some eye-opening books have been written on the topic of doctor-patient relationships. I suppose they’re only really interesting when you’ve had to untangle some of those relationships yourself. But the number of people who feel like that’s the case – that engaging a physician for professional reasons is tantamount to entering what you know upfront will be a real hassle of a relationship, to say the least – is apparently growing.
One book I recommend on the subject is by a long-time family physician, Dr. Phyllis Hollenbeck. In her book, Sacred Trust, Dr. Hollenbeck describes the “far too many jerks in medicine” and offers tips on how to know when it’s time to fire your doctor.
To be fair, just as with any crappy coupledom, it’s almost always the fault of both people. In this NY Times article (Eyes Bloodshot, Doctors Vent Their Discontent) Dr. Sandeep Jauhar writes about the doctors’ side of the story. He’s also written a memoir, Intern: A Doctor’s Initiation.
And Tara Parker-Pope’s NYT blog on Health, Well, just published a few snippets from a recent Reader’s Digest survey of doctors. It’s interesting reading if you’re a patient, but be forewarned: it’ll raise your hackles.