Doctor’s Diary December 20, 2017: Painting a picture

(Snippets from the frontline)

Painting a picture

Upon admission to a hospital, the doctor you choose has already earned your trust and confidence. Nowadays though, one can be admitted by a physician you have never met known as a hospitalist.

Good with computers and replete with medical algorithms templating you through a diagnosis, most are recently trained.  Usually they work 7 consecutive twelve hour days, so at the end of their weekly shift you get a new doctor to handle your algorithm.

Through their history and physical, a plan for your medical care is developed. 

Absent from their fill-in-the-blank form are simple facts that make you a human being, and might even play a role in your illness.  Typically time is limited, yet let the hospitalist know:  Marital status, children, occupation, military service, activities, hobbies, interests, pets, and even your worries.

Do these facts play a role?  Sometimes.  On occasion, without this information, a medical plan may be weakened or a diagnosis might be lost.

Painting a picture of a human being and not just a computerized algorithm could enhance the trust and confidence between you and your doctor.

Gene Uzawa Dorio, M.D.

1 Comment

  • Stephen J Simons, MD says:

    I am a retired pediatrician in the Atlanta area who has been reading Dr. Dorio’s comments for about a year; a friend who lives in Santa Clarita only too recently made me aware of his letters. My career spanned a period of time in the history of medical practice that was both indescribably amazing in terms of life-affirming and life-extending advancements, yet seismically destructive in terms of patient-physician relationships. A great debt is owed to Dr. Dorio for his willingness to share his most intimate feelings about the current state of medical affairs in this country, and the practical advice that he offers should not be ignored by even the most savvy of medically minded individuals among us.

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