Reflections in Medical Practice: Thinking Things Over
Physicians reflect back on what has transpired with their patients, thinking about what was done well and what could have been done better. Often the reflective contemplation, thinking about the process of relating to that patient, making a diagnosis and selecting a therapy or improving skills is of benefit toward future interactions and decisions. Time is often made short for the physician, diseases are not always uniformly expressed, memory and experience is limited and mistakes and misjudgments are always possible. If time is limited, nevertheless at some point in a physician’s life, as part of the professional duty, reflection should be included. ..Maurice.
The Story of Some Doctor’s Reflection
A Poem By Maurice Bernstein, M.D.
I am some doctor and Mary is my Patient
Did I know Mary was
So Sick when I first
She comes to me and asks for Help
Did I take the Time
To listen to the entire
There was a phone Call from Doctor Smith
Did I interrupt Mary
To take the call
As though more
Then there was time left only for a Snap Diagnosis
Did I treat Mary for the flu
Of course the Diagnosis was a Blood Clot to the lung
And why shouldn’t I
Have made that
And now Mary is fighting for her Life and I Reflect.
More on reflection in medicine on a previous thread.
Graphic: Photograph by me of a pool, Descanso Gardens, La Canada-Flintridge, Southern California