In healthcare, there is never an “independence” day. Rather, “interdependence” is the rule – care team members collaborating with each other and the patient to produce the best outcome.
Understandably, however, many physicians today yearn for greater self-determination, noting they have lost the authority to decide how many patients they will see, and what the treatment plans will be. The vast majority of physicians don’t see themselves practicing in this way. They need a degree of autonomy and to have the ability to effectively carry out what they believe to be the best evidence-based treatment plan for their patients.
The current healthcare climate has left many physicians exhausted, physically and emotionally, to the point that they may no longer feel as though they are at the top of their game. This is contributing to an impending shortage of about 100,000 physicians by the year 2030, according to the Association of American Medical Colleges.
Even in a highly interdependent endeavor such as healthcare, there is merit in striking a balance. With all the structural changes occurring in the U.S. healthcare system, including the physician’s business relationship with his or her organization, what must be retained (or rebuilt) is a fundamental respect for the physician’s role and expertise in treating patients.
That’s worth thinking about every day, not only on the Fourth of July.
Read PatientKeeper’s new e-book, “Attending to Physicians: Why Healthcare Must Focus on Improving Physician Experience”.