How doctors are losing compassion

In his regular WSJ column, family physician Ben Brewer laments the lack of compassion and empathy in the medical profession:

Somewhere along the line too many doctors stopped being healers and became prescribers and technicians.

We became business people and started thinking in terms of relative value units — the coin of the medical finance realm — as much as how to make patients better. We took seminars in medical coding, so we could talk the same lingo as the government and the insurance companies.

The changes in medicine are at odds with many of the values that defined the profession I joined.

I’ve only been in practice for 6+ years, so the current business-skewed view is the only world I know.

The only exposure I get of what medicine “used to be” are through columns like Dr. Brewer’s, and I have to say, it’s shocking to read how far the medical profession has fallen.

I can’t imagine living through it.

topics: doctors, compassion

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