Doctors are a respected member of any healthcare company and clinic. They are heroes in white coats working to save lives and make life better, cure disease and fight for those who need it most.
They are dedicated to their work and their patients, as well as being dedicated to the cures of many different illnesses. The problem is that by turning doctors into healthcare heroes, we end up inadvertently pushing up the costs of healthcare and ignoring decaying healthcare standards.
It’s clear to see that physicians are bogged down by administration; paperwork, prior authorization and more and correcting these deficiencies will help. As well as this, it’s important that the morals of doctors are considered. There is a force to be reckoned with in medical culture, as the culture itself has a huge amount of influence over both patients and doctors. It’s a financial, physical and psychological influence and the consequences can either save lives or end them.
The physical harm of medical culture was made obvious by COVID-19. Nearly ⅔ of patients in hospital with COVID-19 had at least one chronic disease. Doctors worked tirelessly to pull these patients back from death, and they are heroes for that. However, had those diseases had more time and effort pushed into them for prevention BEFORE COVID-19, those people may not have been at the brink in the first place.
The problems come with a lack of time. There is not enough of it to prevent just one disease, and the thing is, prevention isn't as heroic as in the moment life-saving. Prevention often gets put at the back of the queue of priorities, even though it’s proven that if healthcare companies put more effort into preventative measures, they can reduce chronic diseases and lower medical bills.
Doctors often have the best intentions, but while they insist that they are putting patients first, they’re doing so while also overprescribing medications and performing risky surgeries. They benefit financially at the expense of the patient and then the theory of medical culture shields them from hypocrisy and shame. Medical culture can do psychological harm, too. Physicians and doctors of all kinds are trained to offer their patients hope and hiding the truth still remains the norm in medicine.
This medical culture of doctors being heroes is sinking the healthcare industry and it has to be slowed down. The key is in impressing upon training doctors the benefits of primary care first. If there were more primary care doctors, there would be better attention paid to chronic disease before it gets to the point of hospitalization. The other key is in how doctors treat their patients, too. If they considered them as a family member when they were treating their patients, perhaps more attention would be paid to them?
There are a lot of contributing factors to soaring medical costs, and the one that is overlooked are the flaws in medicine and the culture of doctors in the first instance. By overcoming this, healthcare can stabilize.