In medicine, there is no one-size-fits-all. Every patient deserves care uniquely tailored to that patient’s needs and wants. But how can this happen when patients are terrified and doctors are awkward in their approach to communication?
The New York Times has a Sunday dialogue among readers this week on the important topic of how patients and doctors need to talk together to get the best tailored medical care.
One of the letters is from me, but that’s only one small reason why I call the dialogue to the attention of readers of this blog. I can never say it enough: Good communications is vital to getting the best medical care.
Here’s a newsletter I did on communications when surgery is being proposed. I called it, “When a Conversation Can Save a Life,” and it’s literally true. I have a list of questions that you can ask your doctor.
I also discuss in the newsletter “informed consent,” the legal doctrine that says patients have a right to control their own bodies and a right to get the information they need to exercise meaningful control. Here’s more from our website on this vital subject of informed consent.