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Professionalism in the Medical Office
Professionalism is the practice or act of being a ‘professional’ in narrow terms. In a broader context, professionalism incorporates many aspects, such as adherence to certain standards and principles as dictated in a career, having and demonstrating the required skills and competence in a certain profession. Professionalism is core in all workplaces as it promotes the delivery of quality services and ensures that the customers or client are satisfied (Currie, et al. 2012). What is more, professionalism is needed when ethical issues might arise as a result of inaccuracy due to inadequate training. For instance, surgery can only be performed by surgeons or else the patient might die or risk having severe post-operation complications. In the medical field, professionalism is mainly important in promoting the patient’s health outcomes. This paper will discuss the instances in which I will use professionalism in the medical office.
It is inarguable that healthcare workers who include a wide range of professionals, such as doctors, nurses, physiotherapists, and Gynecologists, among others, are the most trusted professionals. This is so because, without trust between the physician and the patient, it becomes almost impossible to achieve desirable health outcomes. Besides, if the patient cannot trust a medical practitioner, they are likely not to cooperate and therefore, worsening their health situation (Currie, et al. 2012). In other words, a medical officer needs to be someone who can be trusted. As such, medical professionals are required to demonstrate professionalism by proving to the patients that they can be trusted. As a healthcare worker, trust can be acquired by not only possessing but also demonstrating qualities, such as expertise and integrity, just to mention a few. For instance, a nurse can easily gain the trust of a patient if they assure them that any information they disclose will be treated as confidential since no one wants their health information to be known to the public. In a nutshell, a medical officer will act as a trustworthy person in instances where patients will be required to disclose personal information for the sake of healthcare treatment which will be for their general well-being.
Another instance where professionalism will feature in the medical field is during communication. We all know that poor communication between the physicians as well as amongst the healthcare workers can delay or lead to poor health outcomes. For example, a doctor may end up prescribing the wrong treatment therapy after receiving the wrong information from a relative to a patient who cannot speak or understand English. In such cases, a medical practitioner ought to have the correct information regarding a diagnosis, and following the medical rules before making treatment decisions. Doctors are required to prioritize the patient’s interests while also ensuring that they do not harm them (Currie, et al. 2012). In addition, whenever there are language barriers, it is the duty of the nurse or any other medical officer who is in-charge to find a trusted interpreter. This enables the health workers to not only know important information such as the patient’s history which is core in the treatment plan but also be aware of a client’s stand concerning certain treatment. By doing so, the medical officers will have demonstrated professionalism. Moreover, communication is not only based on language barriers but it is also wide and includes how one conveys the information? Which tone are they using? Can it scare or intimidate the patient? Is it simple or complex language? Medical practitioners should be polite when speaking to their patients and also use a simple language instead of using heavy medical terms.
Most importantly, medical professionals need to demonstrate professionalism by knowing their patients better. Understanding a patient’s background, their nature, and other traits are important in the healthcare setting as it creates an environment where doctors and other medical professionals know how to deal with each individual (Cruess, Cruess, & Steinert, 2016). In a hospital, there are all sorts of patients. For instance, some patients are quick to anger, others are rude, and others are stressed, just to mention a few. A professional medical officer knows how to deal with each type of patients. For example, when dealing with angry patients, the physicians should perhaps, communicate with the patient’s family members to avoid conflict, such as exchanging words. It would look unprofessional if a medical officer refused to attend to a patient merely because of their attitudes. Even worse, it is unprofessional to be rude to a patient.
Overall, professionalism refers to the way in which an individual has mastered the skills required to undertake a particular career and they are experts in that field. Medical practitioners act professionally in many ways, which promote desirable health outcomes. One major way that the medical practitioners demonstrate professionalism is by being trustworthy persons whom the patients can confide in with personal information. Secondly, the health physicians are professional in the way they communicate with the patients and their colleagues. Moreover, professionalism in the medical field is demonstrated by knowing how to deal with the different types of patients.
Cruess, R. L., Cruess, S. R., & Steinert, Y. (Eds.). (2016). Teaching medical professionalism: supporting the development of a professional identity. Cambridge University Press.
Currie, G., Lockett, A., Finn, R., Martin, G., & Waring, J. (2012). Institutional work to maintain professional power: Recreating the model of medical professionalism. Organization Studies33(7), 937-962.