Home Forums Other Specialities General Topics Time spent with a patient

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    Do doctors really spend enough time with their patients? Some do but a lot of them don’t. In UK The GMC suggests that we spend at least 20 minutes for a new consultation and 10 minutes for a follow up appointment. How often do we hear our non medical friends complaining that their doctor had very little time to hear about their complaint and even less time to examine them. Patients were happier with their doctors 40 or 50 years ago when we did not have many of the sophisticated investigations that are available today. They spent more time with the patient trying to find the cause of their symptom. Dr Abraham Verghese a graduate of Madras Medical College and now Professor of Medicine at Stanford University in one of his lectures says modern medicine is in danger of losing a powerful, old-fashioned tool: human touch. He describes our strange new world where patients are merely data points, and calls for a return to the traditional one-on-one physical exam.

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