Dr. Rob, a primary care physician who blogs over at Musings of a Distractible Mind, has posted two very good pieces that may just help foster better relationships between doctors and patients and vice versa. One post is targeted at doctors, listing rules on how to best get along with their patients. Another post is for patients with rules on how to really get the most out of their relationship with their doc. For instance, a “rule” for a patient:
Rule 6: No news might be bad news
“No news is good news” can be a fatal assumption. Never assume that your doctor will call you if there is a problem. I get 50-60 new documents (labs, x-rays, consults, hospital notes) every day. I order hundreds of tests every week. I just cannot keep track of them all. Some will get sent to the wrong doctor and some results never get sent at all. Despite our best efforts to develop a system that will close this loop, there are some documents I just don’t get.
I have to sheepishly admit that I am one of those patients that has gone by the “no news is good news” idea. Needless to say, I won’t be using that flawed assumption anymore!
Dr. Rob says his “purpose in writing these posts is to get both sides looking at things through the other’s perspective.” I think he succeeds!
Post your “rules” in the comments!