Sunday, April 17, 2011

Dutch physicians, in contrast, bare all

In contrast to the attitude expressed below, check out this book, When Healthcare Hurts. From the summary:

There are two kinds of doctor: those who have been involved in a serious incident and those who will be involved in a serious incident at some point in the future, sometimes as a result of their own error, and sometimes due to the circumstances under which they must carry out their work. It is usually a combination of both, and subsequently the doctor almost always feels responsible for the unintended harm caused to the patient.

It is difficult to discuss this kind of experience with others. Openness requires courage, but also an environment that is prepared to listen without prejudice.

In this book, several well-established Dutch physicians share with us a very personal glimpse into a past they are not proud of, but one that forms an inherent part of their professionalism. They hope to contribute to a culture in which it is normal to talk constructively with each other about the darker side of healthcare, about the vulnerability and fallibility of health care providers. Openness as a medication.

(Thanks to Howard for the lead!)

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