People value their relationship with their doctor and look to gain a lot of trust. Doctors don’t only assist with physical illnesses or viruses, but they will support mental health issues from a patient. As such, sometimes a doctor can know a lot about a patient’s private life. Building that trust can be difficult but something that is key in order for the patient to be open and honest and allow for the correct advice and treatment to be given. Let’s explore this vital relationship and some of the factors that can affect it.
How can you build trust?
For the doctor, this can be a very difficult task as they will see many different patients each day. It is important that the doctor not only remembers confidentiality but makes sure that the patient is aware that anything that is said to them is treated in the strictest confidence. This reassurance to the patient is key if they are going to truly open up about any issues or illness they have. They need to be reassured that they will not be judged and that the doctor will not only listen but be empathetic. Developing a good bedside manner is something that should be honed during years of training, but it can be something that doctors continue to develop throughout the length of their professional careers.
What Happens if Things go Wrong?
Things can go wrong within the doctor-patient relationship. At the end of the day, the doctor is only human, and they could give on occasion the incorrect advice or treatment. No matter how good the doctor is, mistakes are sometimes bound to happen. This is why it is extra important that the doctors have a level of cover over themselves. There are many different types of cover on the market, but it is important to understand the detail of what each of them offers and tailor this to suit.
As an example, you could decide to take out a policy with the experts from Incision Indemnity. They have been in this industry for many years and offer help and support to practitioners on professional and medical indemnity. This even includes things such as commercial legal protection and cyber liability. It is not mandated by law that practitioners have this sort of cover. However, if they do not have it and a liability claim comes against them, they could find themselves out of pocket by a lot of money. This can also be extremely stressful as they would either need to pay for a company to represent them or try and drive this to completion on their own.
It is crucial for any doctor to ensure they keep up-to-date and reliable records for their patients. This is not only a legal requirement, but it helps with the preparation for any visit. Sometimes a doctor may not see the same patient for many years but when they do, it is important that the correct level of preparation is completed where they look at the previous medical history. The details stored within the records should be comprehensive enough so that if the case was to be handed to another doctor, they would be able to make sense of it easily.
A patient has the legal right to also ask for their medical records at any time therefore it is important when writing notes to bear this in mind. Most doctors will hire an administrative assistant to support the filing and retention of all these types of records.
As a healthcare practitioner, you need to ensure that you do everything in your power to develop the relationship between you and your patients. Doing so will make many aspects of your job easier to manage.