A large part of our work here at the Society for Participatory Medicine is about changing culture of healthcare. In such times, I’d useful to look at our roots. Here’s an attitude tidbit from 1871 that our friends at the BMJ published sixteen years ago.

"Your patient has no more right to all the truth you know than he has to all the medicine in your saddlebags …. He should get only just so much as is good for him"

“Your patient has no more right to all the truth you know than he has to all the medicine in your saddlebags …. He should get only just so much as is good for him”

 

“FOUL,” you say – “That was 145 years ago!” Well, a friend says that in 1980 a doctor was feeling around on her neck and, being a curious e-patient type, she asked what he was doing. “It’s none of your business what I’m doing,” he said.

And last year on Twitter someone (I forget who) said she’d introduced herself to a new doctor, saying “I have idiopathic [something],” and the new doctor snapped: “Where’d you get that word??”

(The great irony is that “idiopathic” is a fancy Greek-based word for “We wise docs have no freakin’ idea why this is happening.”)

Do you have a culture problem in your medical life?  Have you experienced that treatment?  Please share… including how recently it happened!

 

 

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