Tag: health professionals
RCTs in education: yes, no or maybe?
Health professional practice is both a science and an art. Students learn about the scientific method and how medical knowledge is advanced through experiment, research and evaluation. Randomised controlled trials (RCTs) are a gold standard approach to gathering evidence as to whether treatments work and for whom. Treatments here may mean drugs (or medicines), other forms of disease…
I can’t remember the first time I heard the term ‘clinical reasoning’, but it wasn’t mentioned when I was in medical school. We were brought up on the concept of the ‘differential diagnosis’, which was introduced by William Osler (1849-1919), an English physician working in Canada who promulgated the then radical idea of medical students spending more…
First do no harm – but to err is human
During my hospital-based training, a senior clinician advised me that it would be unlikely that I would go through my medical career without receiving any complaints about my work. He was right. As health professionals we tread the line between doing no harm and keeping patients safe, while being human and therefore not omnipotent. Fortunately for me,…
Let’s talk about sex(ual) history
Looking back in disbelief at my early years as a GP, I wonder how it was ever possible to have a 10-minute consultation for a first contraceptive pill prescription.
A little more uncertainty
Uncertainty and not being able to handle uncertainty appropriately have costs for patients and health professionals. Practising in isolation is now uncommon though there are still clinics with a solo health practitioner. Practising within a trusted team may help with uncertainty as discussing patients with colleagues and seeking different points of view draws on a…
Work and life: balancing or integrating?
Work-life balance or work-life integration? Whose responsibility?
Opioids, pain and the power of marketing
Fascinating book about the Sackler family, Big Pharma and the opioid crisis
A welcome vision for Australian primary health care – but more details required.
Globally health services are under pressure through a combination of national and international factors such as, of course, the Covid pandemic, ageing populations, increased prevalence of long-term conditions, lack of sufficient and appropriate healthcare workers for local contexts, rising costs which are not being adequately met, and many more. I have worked in primary care…
How can I be certain?
Uncertainty: the state of not knowing. Being a health professional: realising you cannot know everything and adapting to the state of uncertainty as appropriate for the context. Uncertainty is a state in which I spent much of my time as a general practitioner. As a medical student my scientific training led to my seeing education as moving…
What does it all mean? A handy guide to health professional qualifications.
Health professional qualifications may be difficult to understand even, in my experience, by health professional students. In this post I consider these questions and others: What do all my doctor’s qualifications mean? Why are some surgeons referred to as Mr/Miss and some as Dr? Why is my English doctor not an MD but my American one…