Let me show you four simple steps, requiring just 15 seconds, that will turn a patient thank you into a two-way healing encounter of the highest order. It is incredibly easy for a thank you from a patient to slip by during a busy day in the office. We can get so caught up in the blizzard of clinical tasks we fail to hear what the patient is trying to communicate. We don’t ...

Read more...

Here in 2014, where employed physicians are projected to comprise a full 1/2 of the work force by 2021, autonomy has become a quaint, old fashioned memory. You are probably in the middle of your organizational chart with a boss above you. This person often has a frustrating ability to dictate the specifics of your practice, unless you figure out a way to have some influence in their decisions. In this article ...

Read more...

Medscape published an article titled, 4 Top Complaints of Employed Doctors, and it was a very interesting read. Turns out the things employed physicians complain about are basically that they are employees. Let me lay out these employed physicians gripes for you with a little detail so you will see what I mean. I will finish this article with a solid way to address all of them. These ...

Read more...

Do you find yourself spending too much time on things that have nothing to do with seeing patients, and then getting home later than you would like? Do you notice that for every 15 minutes you spend with a patient you spend way more than that messing around in the EMR and being distracted by things like prescription refills, test results and a hundred other forms of two bit clerical work ...

Read more...

Forget Angry Birds and other mobile apps that do a great job of helping you waste time. And set aside for now the apps that help you find information and practice clinical medicine more efficiently. It was only a matter of time before mobile apps would be developed that can actually help you prevent physician burnout. Here are my two favorite free mobile apps to help you lower stress and create ...

Read more...

"Disruptive physician" is one of the most misused terms in healthcare these days. In many organizations, those two words have become the c-suite's trump card to quash any physician resistance to new administrative programs. These programs are often have purely financial motives or are a brazen attempt to dump additional tasks on the physicians with no regard for their workload or stress levels. The doctor’s legitimate concerns about quality of care ...

Read more...

In these early days of pay for performance (P4P) reimbursement, as the size of your paycheck begins to reflect your patient satisfaction scores, let's have a frank discussion about three important topics all healthcare providers and organizations must understand going forward.

  1. How your performance will be measured
  2. How to get the highest patient satisfaction scores and be a happier doctor at the same time
  3. The first step to improving performance (in a healthy ...

    Read more...

shutterstock_77508028 Back in the day, coal miners always carried a canary with them in a small cage whenever they would go down in the mine. The canary is a very talkative bird, always singing and tweeting in a constant background noise. Canaries have one more characteristic important to a miner. When there is bad air in the mine, the canary's sensitive lungs will cause ...

Read more...

In this article I will show you a push button shortcut you can use to quickly create more work-life balance, no matter how busy your practice and your life feels at the moment. When it comes to creating balance between your medical career and your life, there is a simple rule in play. The strongest structure wins. When we are talking about ...

Read more...

I believe the projected shortage of physicians caused by  the Affordable Care Act will drive primary care into two opposite tracks. Each is a distinct and logical response to the patient overload and each points out gaping holes in our medical education that must be addressed. The Association of American Medical Colleges  estimates that there will be a shortage of 63,000 doctors by 2015 and 130,600 by 2025 in the wake ...

Read more...

Is the placebo effect something that demands the presence of a living human - or can we program it into a cell phone app? What happens to healthcare if we can? I must admit I have always been fascinated by the concept of placebos. You give a research subject with a documented medical condition a sugar pill - and they get better. They heal themselves despite the fact they have not ...

Read more...

The most common complaint about physicians on the Internet is, “They didn’t listen to me.” You were sitting in the office and the doctor was physically present in the room, but they weren’t all there. Even worse is when the doctor doesn’t try to understand what you are going through. Sometimes it can seem like they didn’t even care. Most of us take for granted that we are the center of the ...

Read more...

Burnout is a constant threat for physicians. Research consistently shows an average of 1 in 3 doctors suffering from symptomatic burnout on any given office day. In my work with over stressed and burned out doctors, I have found that most of us work way too hard being the superhero to our staff, patients and families -- and don’t have any fun at all. It doesn’t have to be ...

Read more...

One of the big practice challenges most physicians face is a frustrating gap in our leadership skills. We step out of residency and are instantly installed as the leader of a multidisciplinary team charged with delivering the highest quality care to our patients. This new leadership role can be daunting. We are prepared to diagnose and treat, but what about all the other questions that come our way?  At times It ...

Read more...

It always has broken my heart to see a person bankrupted by the costs of their healthcare. I remember my outrage when I first learned the only people who pay full price for their medical procedures are the ones paying cash. Insurance companies use their market muscle and patient volumes to  negotiate discounts for their patients that have always been unavailable to the uninsured, individual healthcare consumer. If you have been ...

Read more...

For anyone in the helping professions, compassion fatigue is a common occurrence and a clear signal to take better care of your own needs. Compassion fatigue is when you find yourself challenged to care about your patients in the way you know is proper and expected in your position. One of the key components of quality healthcare is the ability for you to connect with your patients and for them to ...

Read more...

The ambulance crew rolled him into my ER breathless in his pajamas, O2 mask on his face, gasping for air, his short cropped hair a mess, standing straight up. Eugene was what the staff called a "frequent flyer." As the nurse injected some IV Lasix I reviewed his chart to find a classic downward spiral. It was a busy evening. The bays were full of the usual cuts, broken bones and ...

Read more...

Social media in healthcare is all the rage these days. You can’t visit even one physician-oriented website without someone breathlessly advising you to be on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube and now Pinterest. Yet the only reason these talking heads can give you is, “because they are really popular and everyone is doing it.” Social media consulting is a bubble economy at the moment. Don’t listen to them. 1. There is no return on ...

Read more...

Sometimes a patient interaction leaves you speechless. In my experience, that most often occurs when a patient refuses to acknowledge any responsibility for their condition despite massive evidence to the contrary. This is compounded when dealing with caregivers of patients who don’t just drop the ball, they kick it into the next county on purpose. Here is an actual phone conversation between a fellow physician and a son of her two ...

Read more...

One of the most common stressors for physicians is the sheer toxicity of what are considered full time hours. While the rest of the world considers full time to be 40 hours a week, we all know a full time doc starts at 80 plus, if you include all the hours you must be available on call. In physician surveys, schedule flexibility and the ability to function as a part time ...

Read more...

2 Pages

Most Popular

Join 150,000+ subscribers

Get the best of KevinMD in your inbox

Sign me up! It's free. 
close-link
✓ Join 150,000+ subscribers 
✓ Get KevinMD's 5 most popular stories
Subscribe. It's free.