Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Doctors are better than nurses.

Okay, okay, there is no way I actually believe that doctors are better than nurses. Too many nurses are friends of mine and know where I live and would make me pay dearly if I ever actually held beliefs like that. I just put that in the title to get your attention (and it worked, right?)... and in the past I've made a point of proclaiming my respect for good nurses on many occasions.

But on to the story. Something interesting is happening in the medical blogosphere I thought I'd draw your attention to.

Three days ago,
Guitar Girl, RN apologetically admitted to correcting a new intern in front of a patient.

A doctor who replied to that post in the comments section is getting roasted for presenting his opinion on how doctors and nurses have different roles in the care of a patient, for saying things like, "If you believe a nurse would ever have as much medical knowledge as a physician, even after 50 years of clinical experience, I'm sorry to break the bad news of reality to you. It simply will never happen."

Despite the fact that this quote is surrounded by other comments proclaiming his respect for nurses, he's being called "arrogant." Nurses and medics are politely (and not so politely) disagreeing with him, with many of the possible exceptions to his statement being brought up. It's actually turning into really quite the interesting conversation because some other nurses are actually defending him. I recommend you grab a coffee and
check out the discussion.

My take? Well, I've already been told to
turn up the respect a little (by someone I respect) once on this blog in the past couple weeks, which is enough for me, so I left my comment there instead.

I'm also going to conclude that to me, this appears to be one of those issues that is SO sensitive, that anyone who tries to present their viewpoint runs the risk of getting misinterpreted... even if they're attacked for the tone of what they're saying and not actually the words they're using.

That being said, I enjoy watching people dialogue opposing viewpoints, and hopefully everyone will come away understanding the opposing points a bit better. Respect all around. (Fat chance, though, right?)


Bianca Castafiore? said...

La Belle Bianca is here! You've an interesting blog and I, moi, have added it to our tangential list of interests. The arguments over the simple anecdote detailed by the guitar-wielding EM nurse? A mon avis, they simply, but amply, exuded a sense of exaggerated self-worth, with the patient's well-being clearly an afterthought. The standard rejoinder is that a healthy ego is necessary to the decisive, proactive, and highly-evolved mind of the medico -- but that is so laughable that I, moi, La Belle Bianca, fairly hoot myself to death. A bientót, mon cher.

Anonymous said...

Hey Vitum, thanks for the mention of GG's post (I get your posts in my email) and the resulting discussion.

There is actually a lot of respect out there between MDs and RNs and everyone else on the team.

The best part of working in a teaching facility was working with the new docs! : )