Read Scott Haig’s latest dissection of his patients, “When the patient is a Googler,” and I’ve got to wonder if this guy sat out the part of his training that dealt with managing patients, bedside manner, compassion, humanity, that silly thing where Hippocrates suggested that doing no harm was a good idea…
Haig, an orthopod, writes entertainingly about those noisome little pests he calls patients. In this episode, he decides the patient has done too much research, doesn’t discipline her child well enough, and is just in general going to be a pain in the neck.
She knows how to Google him, which he thinks is a bit too spooky, and so he palms her off on another doctor. He then congratulates himself on his perspicacity and communications skills.
Hey, dude: Using a computer to research your doctor–especially given all the bad news about the health care industry these days–is not a crime. Neither is being a pain in the neck or a social nightmare. Having a tough-to-treat problem isn’t something this lady dreamed up to interfere with your tee time. Letting a patient ramble on while you clearly don’t listen to what she’s saying, or offer anything useful except a secret wish to toss Cheerios at her, isn’t exactly stellar patient management.
Must be nice to be in so much demand that you can diss your patients with impunity. Me, I think you were right to tell her to find another doctor. Perhaps you should be a little freer with that advice, at least until you can work up some humanity.
Geez, Time Magazine. Where do you dig up these guys?