How Do Humanistic Physicians Stay That Way?

humanistic physician   In a thoughtful qualitative interview study, investigators asked internal medicine residents at the University of Pennsylvania to nominate attendings who were excellent role models for humanistic care.  The top 16 physicians were mostly academic clinicians and clinician-educators; 75% taught in both the inpatient and outpatient setting.  Among the sustaining factors mentioned by more than half of these physicians were: humility, curiosity, self-reflection, and connecting with the patient as a human being.  A majority felt that humanism helps the physician as well as the patient, and that other people in the environment (e.g. colleagues, nurses, chaplains, learners) helped to sustain their humanism. — Laura Willett, MD

Chou CM, Kellom K, Shea JA. Attitudes and Habits of Highly Humanistic Physicians. Acad Med. 2014 Jul 8.

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