The doctor-patient relationship has long been a cornerstone of medical practice and healthcare. However, as more and more doctors are overworked and worn out by the day-to-day demands of running practice, they are left less time or energy to focus on building and maintaining long-term patient relationships.
The physician-patient relationship is an integral part of the practice of medicine since time immemorial. This relationship is the foundation of medical ethics. Fostering and investing in a long-term patient relationship can be difficult and arduous but can reap various rewards and benefits for the healthcare practitioner.
Initially, establishing such a bond may prove to be challenging for young new doctors. Patients that are not familiar with the physician can question their abilities and expertise from time to time.
As the practice matures, these problems will eventually disappear. On the other hand, doctors must remain vigilant and attentive to the needs of their patients. They have to continue to invest in the relationship over the years.
Trust is a critical concept in the healthcare industry. The medical practice, like any other business, in general, involves a degree of risk and uncertainty. Patients often feel vulnerable, and they rely heavily on the expertise and competence of the caregiver.
A high level of trust between the healthcare professional and the patients has many benefits for both parties. The perception of improved care, a higher level of acceptance for the treatment offered, and reduced patient anxiety are among the most outstanding factors out of these benefits.
Like other service providers, doctors are expected to act with honesty and integrity to forge a better long-lasting relationship with their clients. It is of paramount importance that patients have confidence in their physician’s ability to advise and treat them properly.
An honest practice helps the patient understand that the doctor is acting in their best interests. On the contrary, if the patients feel that the medical practitioners are dishonest with them in any way, it’s those practitioners that have many things to lose, including patients’ trust, respect and credibility.
Staying Connected with Patients
As we journey through the digital age, we like to say that we are more connected than ever. However, this also means that we now have less and less face to face human contact. The bad news is that the lack of human connection, as far as medicine is concerned, is adversely affecting the doctor-patient relationship. The good news is that now we know the question, we can search for answers and solutions and try our best to fix this defect stemming from the virtual world.
On the flip side, some would argue that technology has not reduced but slightly altered the doctor-patient relationship.
In order to maintain lasting relationships with your patients, you must stay connected with them as their preferred doctor. You have to meditate to realize your place and role in their worlds as their preferred physicians. In fact, promoting trust between the healthcare provider and the patient is essential in the new e-health environment.
Whereas in the past the doctor only communicated face-to-face with their patients, now they can stay connected round the clock and offer much better and inclusive care with the help of emails, chat communications and even virtual visits.