Will Sr. Managers Change? LO6921

Dr Ilfryn Price (101701.3454@compuserve.com)
Tue, 23 Apr 1996 10:30:49 -0400

Replying to LO6868 --


Rick I endorse the principle

>I propose that the consultants amongst us should see ourselves as healers
and, like physicians, should carry an ethical code that includes "do no
harm" to the best of our abilities to see and judge this.

but have some concern at the metaphor of healing. The concern is, for me,
aptly put by the following story [written by my partner Ray Shaw about his
own GP [General Medical Practitioner]

He is a very thorough and diligent professional whose process is somewhat
different from the rapid treatment sometimes given by others. He explains
at some length the possible and probable medical cause underlying the
symptoms described by the patient, he advises of the medication
prescribed, and outlines how and to what effect it should be taken.
Through this process of communication and education the patient ends up
knowledgeable with regards causes of the illness, the working of his/her
body, and the treatment. The physician has thus removed any magic and
mystery. The communication process is noticeable when compared with the
more dispensary practices of others. I asked what lay at the root of this
change in pattern. He offered his view that the 'healthy' condition
between doctor and patient was when the patient took responsibility for
their own health, with occasional assistance from a doctor. If the patient
is to exercise this responsibility they needed at least some knowledge.
The alternative of the doctor being responsible for the patient's health
seemed to him to be a limiting start point.

I asked what the consequences were of this approach. He quickly replied
that each consultation took longer - by virtue of the process of
communication. As a result he looked less efficient in terms of time
taken. His process did not match the performance criteria of the system in
terms of the speed of processing people and some patients suggested they
did not have the time to be responsible for their own health. They just
wanted to be fixed! In the main though people were healthier - Goddammit!

Im sure Ray's physician is the sort you had in mind Rick, but who hasn't
met, or sometimes demanded, the other kind?

If Price
The Harrow Partnership
Pewley Fort Guildford UK


Dr Ilfryn Price <101701.3454@compuserve.com>

Learning-org -- An Internet Dialog on Learning Organizations For info: <rkarash@karash.com> -or- <http://world.std.com/~lo/>