A good doctor is hard to find, sure.
But when we say this – we often do not mean that we cannot locate a “competent” or “intelligent” doctor.
We sometimes mean “kind.” Or caring. Or likable. Maybe personable.
The trouble is that it is not always easy to tell the difference between a doctor that is
doing their job or one that is treating you
as they would their own.
I hope that you and I always get the later.
She would likely refuse surgery if I launched into a detached spiel detailing all the risks and possible complications. I could do so, document her refusal in the chart, consider my duty discharged, and move on to the next task. Instead, with her permission, I gathered her family with her, and together we calmly talked through the options. As we talked, I could see the enormousness of the choice she faced dwindle into a difficult but understandable decision. I had met her in a space where she was a person, instead of a problem to be solved. She chose surgery. The operation went smoothly. She went home two days later, and never seized again.