A team of social psychologists studied the effect that bedside manner has on patient outcomes. Not surprisingly, patients not only prefer to have a nice doctor who spends a couple extra minutes with them, talks to them as people rather than CPT or RVU numbers, etc., but they actually get better quicker.

In my work with disruptive physicians, I frequently hear that the reason why doctors are gruff (or worse) with their colleagues is because they are looking out for patient care (in contrast to their perception that others on the treatment team are not). These physicians often see significantly more patients than their peers, move faster than others, and talk over people… and they don’t always slow down enough so that their patients feel listened to and understood.

So, perhaps we should all slow down a bit, get our noses out from the screen and pay attention to our patients. It’s good for them.