Home Communication Loss of Trust in Physicians
Doctors often complain about lack of respect from patients but, when it comes to that medicine and its practitioners fare better than many others

Loss of Trust in Physicians

Doctors often complain they don’t get enough respect from their patients but, when it comes to respect and trust, medicine and its practitioners fare better than many other aspects of our society.

Still, trust in physicians has been declining, especially from younger people.

There are lots of reasons for this erosion of trust among doctors  and for medicine generally.

Probably the biggest of these is the limited time from primary care doctors, working for large hospital systems, spending that way, less time with patients.

Many hospital systems, where the majority of primary care physicians now practice, require doctors to see an average of 8 patients in 30 minutes.

Given that pace, it’s extremely difficult to build trust and create meaningful relationships.

Compounding the problem, patients often do not stay with the same doctor long enough to establish trust making doctors leaving or dropping from insurance networks and employers changing insurance carriers in search of lower costs.

Another contributor to eroding trust is the availability of medical and wellness information, as well as information and ratings for health care providers, on the internet and via social media.

There’s been an explosion in the kind of information ordinary people can access for their own health and from sources like medical journals and the results of clinical trials.

Other experts say that although this patient empowerment lets patients become more actively involved in their health and wellness, it also means they are less likely to unquestioningly trust a physician’s diagnosis or follow a treatment plan than patients in the era before the internet.

Patients’ confidence in their care providers is further weakened by skyrocketing care costs.

Although doctors are not primarily responsible for the problem, they often bear the brunt of patient anger.

Most physicians nowadays claim their practices are encountering more angry patients than a year or 2 earlier and also, financial issues are one more cause of anger.

Among some patients, anger takes the form of believing their doctor is recommending unnecessary tests or procedures to earn more money.

Of course, mistrust on doctors and the health care system is longstanding and frequently justified, especially on racial and ethnic disparities which can be found on stereotyping, biases and uncertainty on the part of health care providers who contribute to unequal treatment.

Clinicians who do not believe they are prejudiced typically demonstrate unconscious implicit negative racial attitudes and stereotypes.

Establishing or rebuilding trust with patients is not easy, especially given the time and financial constraints most doctors face, but it is still possible.

The process starts with maximizing the time with patients by, for example, delegating to staff members tasks that reduce time between doctor and patient interactions.

Let patients talk about the personal aspects of their illness, then add an affirming comment like “that must be very difficult”.

Doctors cannot expect trust automatically but, if they work hard to demonstrate they are trustworthy, patients will come to trust them more over time.

Medical Manage

Εμείς και οι συνεργάτες μας αποθηκεύουμε ή/και έχουμε πρόσβαση σε πληροφορίες σε μια συσκευή, όπως cookies και επεξεργαζόμαστε προσωπικά δεδομένα, όπως μοναδικά αναγνωριστικά και τυπικές πληροφορίες, που αποστέλλονται από μια συσκευή για εξατομικευμένες διαφημίσεις και περιεχόμενο, μέτρηση διαφημίσεων και περιεχομένου, καθώς και απόψεις του κοινού για την ανάπτυξη και βελτίωση προϊόντων. Αποδοχή Cookies Όροι Προστασίας Προσωπικών Δεδομένων