If you have been harmed by a doctor or other medical provider's error or negligence, you're rightly focused on how it's impacted you. You aren't likely to consider that doctor or other medical professional a victim -- particularly if you're taking legal action against them. However, the medical community has begun addressing something called the "second-victim phenomenon" and recognizing how these health care professionals are impacted when they make an error that harms someone.
It's easier than ever for women to find a female doctor. Often, they think that another woman will take them and their medical issues more seriously than a male doctor. However, female patients are still more likely to be misdiagnosed or to not have their medical conditions recognized at all than male patients.
Most people assume that doctors and other medical providers are obligated to tell patients and family members the truth. After all, how else can we make informed decisions about our health care? Therefore, a recent poll of doctors and nurses (including advance practice registered nurses) may be unsettling. The website Medcape surveyed 286 doctors and 362 nurses.
Psychologists typically have fewer malpractice suits filed against them than medical doctors who treat people for physical ailments and diseases. (Note that psychiatrists are also medical doctors and can prescribe drugs.)
We all know people who constantly interrupt. They think they know what we're about to say, so they finish our sentences for us. As we're speaking, they're reminded of something that impacts them, so they hijack our story and tell their own. Often, they're not even listening to us. They just interrupt and take over the conversation.
We know that doctors sometimes misdiagnose conditions. In the more serious cases, they may tell a patient they have a mild condition when it's actually something very serious and potentially fatal without proper treatment.
With the holidays upon us, many of our physicians are taking long vacations. A number of experienced physicians in hospital emergency rooms and urgent care centers may be doing the same. This can leave patients who fall off a ladder hanging Christmas lights or crash their brand new mountain bike over the holidays in the hands of less experienced health care providers or waiting long periods to be seen by anyone.
You probably don't expect sales representatives to be in the operating room while you're undergoing surgery. However, if you're having a medical device inserted or replaced, there may be a rep there.
Many of us don't go anywhere without our smartphones. They're constantly pinging with incoming emails, texts and comments on our Facebook posts -- not to mention phone calls.
Many physicians who decide to practice emergency medicine do so because they like the idea that no one day will be like the next. While doctors who work in the emergency room may appreciate the adrenaline rush that comes with working there, they have to be prepared to diagnose patients who come in with a variety of conditions. It shouldn't come as a surprise that they tend to make many diagnostic errors.