Up@dawn 2.0

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Rude Doctors, Rude Nurses, Rude Patients

Just how much rudeness is there in the hospital, and who bears the brunt of it?

A few weeks ago I wrote about a study that looked at what happens to medical teams when parents are rude to doctors. In these studies of simulated patient emergencies, doctors and nurses working in the neonatal intensive care unit were less effective in teamwork and communication, and in their diagnostic and technical skills, after an actor, playing a parent, made a rude remark about the quality of the hospital.
These results bothered me, not because I was surprised that there might be rudeness (and worse) coming from parents, but because I pride myself on a kind of professional immunity. Sure, parents are sometimes rude, and occasionally openly hostile; and sure, I acknowledge that that can be upsetting. But I wouldn’t have imagined that it would actually affect my medical skills or decision making...
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