This evening I had a few minutes to join the discussion on #Bioethx. The topic this evening was “difficult” patients.
As with all things having to do with medicine and ethics, there is not necessary a right or wrong answer, just consensus based on variables.
However, I happen to have 2 opinions:
1. If we consider a patient to be “difficult” we should first ask ourselves why? Is it because we, ourselves, are not taking the time to stop and listen to the needs of the patient? Or is it that we have a different world view, and we just cannot wrap our minds around meeting the expectation of the patient?
2. Firing patients. I think if we as healthcare professionals know that we cannot deliver on a patients expectations, or that we have a differing opinion and are not willing to address or compromise along with the patient, then we have a obligation to come back to the patient with more appropriate options of providers that may be a better fit. As well, if a patient is interfering or negatively impacting the care of another patient, then there may be a need to address the situation, and again, come with another option for care.
We need to remember that each patient has their own version of #MyIdealPtExp and it is our responsibility to understand that, one patient at a time. We can only treat one patient at a time, so why not take the time, and make it count?
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