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A Question You Wish your Doctor Would Ask

Posted 12/23/2015

Posted in

From the health section in Time, comes this interesting essay about a question patients wish their doctors would ask them. I think this is a thoughtful approach, and am amused that when I first read the question, I assumed it was a question that patients wanted to ask the doctor. I had it backwards.

"What is the worst part of this for you?" is the designated query. It indeed would be empathetic of the doctor to ask us, but it would also be helpful for us to be able to ask: "What is the worst part of this?" about a particular treatment or recommendation. I don't know if this is the single most important question for a doctor, but it surely could be a useful part of a true conversation.

Here is the start and a link to read more:

The One Question You Really Want
Your Doctor To Ask

Mandy Oaklander @mandyoaklander 

A new essay argues for a wholeperson
approach to medicine
People visit their doctors to be healed, but
that’s often more complicated than fixing
an ailing body part. Addressing a person’s
whole range of suffering—the physical,
the emotional and the spiritual—is rare in
modern medicine.
But taking this whole-person approach to
health care is simpler and quicker than it
seems, according to a new essay
written by two physicians and
published in JAMA. A more
compassionate, patient-focused kind
of medicine starts when the doctor
asks one simple question: What’s the
worst part of this for you?


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